Of the work, Venter states: This exhibition is about challenging the limits of the ‘e-book' concept which is stuck in ‘conventions' at many levels. If the ‘bookness' of the ‘e-book' can be analysed in terms of formal and functional properties and relationships then I would argue that the tight relationships between form and function need to be questioned before we can proceed to re-invent or ‘enhance and expand' the ‘e-book' as ‘Artist's Book'. In this process we also need to be critical of our own reliance on formal attributes as a dominant strategy in visual arts for identification and classification. We may ask if our reliance on formal characteristics is not partly responsible for our blindness to the radical changes in the functionality of new media like the Web. i. I employ the I-Ching method of ‘divination' in ancient Chinese culture as a writing method. The use of this method allows me to automate the process of writing itself.
ii. I use the I-Ching Hexagram as a symbol for writing, replacing the phonetic alphabet with a symbolic system which is not in use as a general writing system in any culture. The Hexagram is normally used as a system of logic (functioning as keys) leading to text fragments in the I-Ching. My work maintains the link between the Hexagram and the texts as well as its associated symbols.
iii. The Hexagrams are arranged in a regular grid – thus maintaining the planar arrangement of symbols found in Western writing, but the form of the symbols will not express a visual hierarchy as Western convention dictates.
iv. For the web-based work the planar surface will be extended beyond the web page convention of vertical scrolling. It will extend far beyond the width and height of the screen and web browser. The surface will be a grid of Hexagrams which are uniquely rewritten every time the site is accessed. The hexagrams will allow access to Symbols and Texts from the I-Ching.
v. The Print-based work will limit itself to the conventional technologies of paper and printers – whatever is available to us in this case.