C.R.E.A.M. showcases the work of artists who are politically engaged in open source art & technology while using their creative practice to address issues related to the monetization of net-based work.
“It's been 22 long hard years and still strugglin’
Survival got me buggin’ but I'm alive on arrival
I peep at the shape of the streets
And stay awake to the ways of the world cause shit is deep”
- Wu Tang Clan
Over twenty years have passed since net art first appeared on the screen, and we still don’t have an established system for buying and selling it. The greatest developments in the field aren’t coming from institutions, curators, or dealers, but from artists who are experimenting with payment and distribution models in ways that are at once creative and practical.
C.R.E.A.M. showcases the work of artists who are politically engaged in open source art and technology while using their creative practice to address issues related to the monetization of net-based work. The pieces subvert existing models, create new ones, and draw inspiration from e-commerce, software piracy, crowdfunding, computer viruses, and various approaches to digital rights management.
The conversation around online art and commerce is not a new one. In 1996, Nick Szabo predicted the failure of micropayments, suggesting that their "mental transaction cost"  is too high. This assertion was later supported by Clay Shirky who, in 2003, argued that the goal of the Internet is "fame, not fortune," citing free content as an "evolutionarily stable strategy". Micropayments eventually became relevant circa 2008 with the launch of Apple’s app store, and Shirky’s “fame, not fortune”  argument floated during the early years of social media, but now it’s time to get real. Artists need money. Good art should not only be widely distributed, but also financially supported. Art Micro Patronage would have been curated into this exhibition, had it not already been the platform, as viewers are encouraged to access, share, and discuss works, with the explicit opportunity to support the artists through micropayments. (By the way, if you think the works on AMP are inaccessible, jump to 0-Day Art’s piece, Art Micro Patronage Season 1, which is a torrent of every past exhibition, including this one.)
The past year has seen a major influx of mainstream art world influencers seeking real estate online (see: VIP Art Fair, Art.sy, and Paddle 8), no doubt looking to capitalize on the web’s massive distribution potential. C.R.E.A.M. places the focus on artists who are deeply familiar with the web, have mastered its complexities, and built creative systems that could not exist on any other platform. From JODI’s Goodtimes, a work inspired by the computer virus hoax of the same name, to Greg Leuch’s G.R.E.E.D., a browser extension designed to demonstrate the impact of online censorship, we can intuit a wide range of political opinions and emotion related to the buying, selling, and distribution of art online, effectively establishing the incredible potential of this medium. This shit is deep.
 Szabo, Nick. "Micropayments and Mental Transaction Costs." [http://www.gernot-gawlik.de/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/micrpapayments-and-mental-transaction-costs.pdf.].
 Shirky, Clay. "Fame vs Fortune: Micropayments and Free Content." Clay Shirky's Writings About the Internet. 5 Sept. 2003. [http://www.shirky.com/writings/fame_vs_fortune.html].
LINDSAY HOWARD is a curator and researcher based in New York. She is the Curatorial Director of 319 Scholes, a Brooklyn gallery dedicated to promoting works at the intersection of art and technology. Howard has lectured at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and University of Cincinnati. Her exhibitions have been featured in ARTINFO, TechCrunch, Fast Company, Creators Project, Rhizome, L Magazine, DIS Magazine, Hyperallergic, and her exhibition "DUMP.FM IRL" was selected by Art Fag City as one of the 10 Best Exhibitions of 2010. She is the Curatorial Fellow at Eyebeam Art & Technology Center in NYC.
Art Micro Patronage Season 01 Complete, torrent, 2012 by 0-Day Art