Since the s, big institutions like Tate Modern, the Pompidou Centre, or the Whitney in New York, began making big claims in this respect, and they usually had the power, the legitimacy and the money to enforce these claims: A digital video called Still Life by Sam Taylor Wood makes the point quite poignantly, as the only object unaffected by mortality in this tableau is the plastic ball point pen.
For instance, it can be used as a more vivid term for reception and spectatorship in general, if we think of the active and interactive role we now tend to assign to the spectator — as viewer, as user, as player — in light of all the different screen activities that are involved in the consumption and apperception of moving images. Several of these forms of ownership just named would seem to shift appropriation from the realm of reception to an act of production, and in the cases I have been discussing, when it comes to appropriation, reception can become productive as in the video essay , and production can be a form of reception as in found footage films — with both coming together in the concept of post-production: One of the strategic uses of obsolescence as a critical concept can be found in the fact that, being a term that inevitably associates both capitalism and technology, it is of special interest in the context of both the art world and audio-visual media, both old and new, because it implicitly acknowledges that today there is no art outside capitalism and technology.
What is key, perhaps, is the insouciant and self-evident use of the Hollywood legacy, in the very face of copyright restrictions and punitive actions for infringements. For the kind of art tourism that now sustains not only Paris and New York, Amsterdam and Venice, Berlin and Vienna, Seoul and Shanghai, but also Belfast, Bilbao and Brisbane, the moving image as both art object and source of information has become indispensable. Plus the script is compatible in every major browser, even IE6.