Here is a passage from a March, 2006 interview between the artist Cory Arcangel and the Brussels-based curator Karen Verschooren:
Cory:… you can’t just put a computer with a browser that’s pointing to a website. You have to somehow acknowledge that it is in a gallery, for better or worse. Video, I think, started to do that…
… Paper Rad for example presented a huge sculpture, based on animated gifs. It wasn’t necessarily Internet art anymore, but it was art that could only exist because the Internet exists. That is definitely some kind of solution..
…That is what is going to happen I think. It is not going to be pure strict Internet art, it’s going to be art that exists because of the Internet or is influenced by the Internet or there was research on the Internet.
Karen: That’s almost everything in art. Almost all contemporary art is influenced by the fact that we live in a networked society.
Cory: That’s fine you know. It is going to be seamlessly integrated into everything else. Which is what it should be. But pure Internet art, I think, should stay on the Internet.
Karen: So, if I understand you correctly, you are saying that it is the responsibility of the artist to transform his Internet art piece in that way that it fits into the gallery space. It is not the gallery that has to change its economic model of exhibiting because of theirmission statement or whatever.
Verschooren sums up this strategy as roughly “the art needs to change to fit the gallery, instead of the gallery needs to change to fit the art.” Arcangel answers affirmatively, but I wonder if it is this simple. One thing I think is that Post Internet art does not just bend itself to work as “art,” it also changes one’s conception of “art.” Working in the confines of the white cube are not necessarily always limiting to artists. By playing with that history of what has been marked as “art” and successfully entering into that dialogue, these artists are changing what one thinks of as “art” in the same way that Daniel Buren, Michael Asher or earlier artists like Jasper Johns or (of course) Duchamp worked within the gallery to change what could be shown in the gallery and thus be reflected upon as “art”.
It’s a two-way street and the best piece’s, including pieces by Arcangel, are able to be read as “art,” and do it well enough that they demand “art” to re-evaluate its conception of itself.