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外研版高中英语新教材(选择性必修第一册)课文及录音（Unit 4 | Developing ideas) Unit 4 P44
1 Think “art”. What comes to your mind? Is it Greek or Roman sculptures in the Louvre, or Chinese paintings in the Palace Museum? Or maybe, just maybe, it’s a dancing pattern of lights?
2 The artworks by American artist Janet Echelman look like colourful floating clouds when they are lit up at night. Visitors to one of her artworks in Vancouver could not only enjoy looking at it, they could also interact with it—literally. They did this by using their phones to change its colours and patterns. Exhibits such as these are certainly new and exciting, but are they really art?
3 Whatever your opinion, people have been expressing their thoughts and ideas through art for thousands of years. To do this, they have used a variety of tools and technologies. Yet Michelangelo and others have been labelled as “artists” rather than “technicians”. This means that art and technology have always been seen as two very separate things.
4 Today, however, technological advances have led to a combination of art and technology. As a result, the art world is changing greatly. Now art is more accessible to us than ever before. Take for example one of China’s most famous paintings from the Song Dynasty, Along the River During the Qingming Festival. As this artwork is rarely on display, people have sometimes queued up to six hours for a chance to see it. Once in front of the painting, they only have limited time to spend taking in its five metres of scenes along the Bian River in Bianjing. Thanks to technology however, millions more people have been able to experience a digital version of this painting. Three-dimensional (3D) animation means that viewers can see the characters move around and interact with their surroundings. They can also watch as the different scenes change from daylight into nighttime.
5 The art-tech combination is also changing our concepts of “art” and the “artist”. Not only can we interact with art, but also take part in its creation. With new technological tools at our fingertips, more and more people are exploring their creative sides. The result has been exciting new art forms, such as digital paintings and videos.
6 However, the increase in the amount and variety of art produced has also raised questions over its overall quality. Can a video of someone slicing a tomato played in slow motion really be called “art”?
7 Similarly, such developments are making the line between art and technology less distinct. Can someone unfamiliar with traditional artists’ tools really call themselves an “artist”? And is the artist the creator of the art itself, or the maker of the technology behind it? A recent project used technology and data in the same way that Rembrandt used his paints and brushes. The end result, printed in 3D, was a new “Rembrandt painting” created 347 years after the artist’s death. These advances are perhaps bringing us closer to a time when computers rather than humans create art.
8 Where technology will take art next is anyone’s guess. But one thing is for sure—with so many artists exploring new possibilities, we can definitely expect the unexpected.