Over the last couple of decades, Australia has risen to become a globally recognised hub for technological innovation. The roots of this are based in the diverse culture and talent within the country, supported by important investments in research and education. This article is all about Exciting new Aussie Art Scene is Breaking through Digital Frontiers.
But now there’s another influential factor at play, born from the naturally creative nature for which Australians are also famed, having already made great strides in popular culture surrounding movies and music. The natural progression came as entertainment mediums evolved and merged, from which the modern gaming scene quickly emerged.
Now this proud country Down Under is experiencing another form of evolution, producing some of the most fascinating digital artworks, exploring all manner of creative ideas and themes. This has become the latest addition to Aussi pop culture, altering the landscape of our very perceptions about how technology can be used and enjoyed.
Gaming is now established in Australian pop culture
While many people still view gaming as little more than a hobby or pastime, opinions have gradually shifted over the last decade or so, thanks to a growing appreciation that games can actually be considered an art form. Developers are increasingly thinking outside the box, seeking new and intriguing ways to engage and entertain players, establishing virtual realms that are filled with beauty and wonder.
One great example is the huge diversity of online casino slots in Australia, commonly known as “pokies” in the local vernacular. They are much more than just spinning reels, revolving around a simple game of chance, and building an audiovisual experience around these games requires great creativity, which is certainly something Aussie developers are demonstrating in spades these days. Essentially, if it can be imagined in our minds, there’s probably a pokie themed around the idea.
Such creativity is becoming the hallmark of a thriving games industry in Australia, having earned widespread recognition as one of the key hotbeds for talent, whether emerging locally or lured to this country from abroad. Some of the biggest international studios have relocated to cities like Sydney and Melbourne, Adelaide or Canberra, while local developers have also cultivated an impressive indie games audience. Indeed, the gaming scene has firmly taken root in modern Aussie pop culture.
Artform or investment?
Like many new technology trends, there was an initial boom as non-fungible token (NFT) values quickly soared, followed by an inevitable bust in 2022 and early 2023. Regardless of their actual monetary values, NFT art was certainly blossoming and opening up new digital possibilities, both for creatives and consumers alike. This niche of digital art has also generated considerable interest in Australia.
Thanks to an already successful animation and digital art scene, Australia has become home to projects like White Cubeless. This online contemporary art gallery launched in 2022, opening its virtual doors with an exhibition of digital NFT works by Aussie artists. Likewise, the new digital medium has proven attractive for artists who previously used other mediums to present their work, such as canvas or print.
Some are already experienced in digital arts, having worked on animation or visual effects for major cinema productions. But for the most part, access to gallery representation has been limited at best or completely non-existent. All that has changed in recent years, including the foundation of a dedicated Australian National NFT Gallery based in Melbourne, aimed at combining art and technological innovation.
Artistic excellence is encouraged
Perhaps the biggest influencer of this digital art revolution, Australia itself has always been keen to showcase the very best aspect of itself, and the word “digital” is central within the current pursuit of artistic excellence, shaping how Aussies now approach creative culture.
This was boosted by the launch of a Digital Culture Strategy in 2021, backed by national and state governments, accompanied by the support and collaboration of notable artists and organisations. Looking ahead, this new arena for the digital arts will undoubtedly continue to flourish, keeping Australia firmly positioned among the most innovative and exciting places to find modern digital creativity.