cyberspace gallery

The Exhibition

cyberspace gallery history

In the late 1980′s and well into the 1990′s, digital art was segregated from so-called ‘traditional media’. There may be many explanations for this, but according to Michael J. Masucci, it was likely due to the relative ease of duplication of digital art, which potentially made it less ‘valuable’ to art collectors.

EZTV had already been a very early adopter of the creative use of the Internet, well before the invention of the World Wide Web, by staging its first live and international Internet-based event in 1987. Following that, EZTV operated a BBS dedicated to independent media news and announcements.

CyberSpace Gallery grand opening, 1992

In 1992, Cyberspace Gallery formally opened as an important subspace for EZTV dedicated to electronic art, however, with a more focused curatorial mandate toward work that was primarily digital. Its founding members were Michael J. Masucci and historian/curator Patric Prince. Other key individuals in its creation include Victor Acevedo, ia Kamandalu, Michael Wright, and intern Lisa Tripp.

works and collaborations

EZTV and CyberSpace Gallery quickly became the dedicated venue for LA’s digital revolution as well as the routine meeting place for many of the core digital art organizations, such as LA-SIGGRAPH (which held its first collaboration with EZTV in 1984), guest organizations such the Visual Music Alliance, International Synergy, Electronic Cafe International, and became a collaborator in seminal events such as On the Threshold (1985) and the CyberArts International Conferences (1990-2), and several years of San Francisco’s Digital Be-In.

In 1993, Peter Lunenfeld, PH.D, a media theorist then affiliated with LACPS, programmed a show called “Pictures from the Hyperworld” which was curated by Paul Lee and exhibited by EZTV/CyberSpace Gallery.

Dr. Timothy Leary had been an early supporter of Michael Masucci and ia Kamandalu’s efforts, playing the role of god in their 1992 collaboration with Zina Bethune as part of the finale of the 3-year CyberArts International Conferences. In 1993, Leary began a series at EZTV in conjunction with CyberSpace Gallery called “How to Operate Your Brain”.

how to operate your brain, 1993

Invitation for a 4-night event featuring Dr. Timothy Leary, CyberSpace Gallery, 1993 

In 1995, after presenting occasional online events since 1987, artist Mark Gash offered to create EZTV’s first true website and included CyberSpace Gallery. This was among the world’s very first online galleries and a very early example of one dedicated to digital art. It became an early Yahoo! “Site of the day” and was included in Yahoo!’s book “Yahooligans!”.
CyberSpace gallery’s last official group art exhibition was part of the AFI’s 20th anniversary tribute to EZTV in 1999, as well as part of DV Expo’s tribute to EZTV that same year.
In the early 2000′s, Patric Prince generously donated her important computer art archives to the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
When EZTV moved to 18th Street Art Center in 2000, it held several special CyberSpace Gallery shows, including an exhibition by Michael Wright & Victor Acevedo called “Digital Duality” (2002) as well as “Hacking the Timeline” (2005 & 2011).

CyberSpace gallery received critical press attention in the LA Times, LA Weekly, LA Reader, and other media outlets. It quickly became the definitive curatorial voice for the routine public exhibition of computer and electronic art in the country. It set the standard by which all subsequent digital art galleries replicated.
More importantly, perhaps, CyberSpace Gallery won the public’s support of its exhibitions, which were among the best attended of all EZTV-related events. Today most, if not all working artists, utilize computers or other digital devices in some part of their arts practice.

setting the standard

lectures & Live Performances

InTone, 1990


Digital Be-In, 1998

Robert Gelman & Michael J. Masucci

DEFCON 9 "Social Engineering Contest", 2001

Kate Johnson & Michael J. Masucci

Computer Art: Developing a Critical Perspective, 2014

Andrea Foenander

cyberspace gallery collections

Hacking the timeline

Video still of Loretta Livingston in Kate Johnson's "Core", 1991

An artistic and explorative look into the various tools that have been used to create works of art over human history. This collection dives into what it means to transition from one tool to the next, such as from analog to digital and digital to futuristic mediums. One begs the question of the kind of intrinsic values that they offer. 

Hacking the Timeline takes a historical and philosophical approach to art, relating to the controversial need for underrepresented artistic movements to ‘hack’ or make their way into art history. 

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vertical blanking

Vertical Blanking Studio with Michael J. Masucci and
ia Kamandalu (Kim McKillip), 1989

An experimental music and art duo comprised of Michael J. Masucci and ia Kamandalu, Vertical Blanking produced video works, music, and live performance events between the years 1986-1993. They were among the earliest artists to produce true ‘desktop video’, combining analog video tape decks with desktop computers in hot-rodded rigs which they engineered and system-designed themselves.

Without the creation and success of Vertical Blanking, CyberSpace Gallery would not have existed. The duo’s efforts solidified the connection between the computer art community and EZTV.

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The digilantes

Michael Wright in front of wall of digital portraits at SIGGRAPH, 1990s

The mid 1980s began to give rise to an international movement for digital art. 

In Los Angeles, a group of art activists known as the “Digilantes” embraced this digital technology and worked to establish the scene within the city by producing, self-promoting, and exhibiting their digital art.

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vanessa blaylock

Digital avatar self portrait of Vanessa Blaylock

Vanessa Blaylock is an avatar performer and digital activist who has graced the virtual scene, creating and curating performances through online environments, including the 3D virtual world "Second Life". Her involvement with EZTV and CyberSpace Gallery bridges the gap between the budding technological advancements of today and the intrinsic value of futuristic virtual culture. 

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roots of cyberspace gallery

Video still of "Larger Than Life" digital animation by Dave Curlender & David S. Goodsell, 1985

Venture back in time to learn the historical events and artworks that inspired CyberSpace Gallery into conception. From digital painting for club culture to abstract animated video, the Roots of CyberSpace Gallery explores the various influences of the EZTV core team that led to becoming an advocate for computer-based art as serious artistic expression. 

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A southern digital art chronology

Hacking the Timeline v2.0 invitation, 2011

For scholars and researchers interested in observing a brief take on the chronology of Southern California’s digital art scene. 

Discover CyberSpace Gallery’s involvement in the digital history timeline as valuable silent voices who dared to let their work be seen outside of the safety of professional conferences and academia. 

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