Images via Steve Fraschini's Behance Page
As libraries and museums begin to become digitized through projects like the Google Art Project and Texas's new all-digital library, we must ask how the future will honor our cultural artifacts, heroes, and icons. Chances are it won't be through traditional busts and statues.
Rather, individuals like French digital artist and user interface designer, Steve Fraschini, may be pointing to the future of memorials: synthesized, digital portraits that will float online like virtual cemeteries.
Fraschini's recent project, Ghost Memories, transforms music legends like Eazy-E (who's classic album, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa, was subject to its own memorial on Pitchfork today), Daft Punk, and even Scarlett Johansson into "spectral," digital art. Though let's be real, Johansson's music stint with Pete Yorn doesn't quite fit the music icon threshold.
Using a WebGL process and synthesized images, the French artist has given the internet its own celebritiy statues that look like a cross between sonic waveforms and the early drafts of a CGI image.
Sure, to say this is the definitive future of memorials is a bit extreme. Yet, as we continue to favor bit-heavy artifacts over tangible products, there will be more and more fan art that exists online in creative formats like this.
Personally, I'd love to see digital renderings of digital-heavy artists like Gorillaz (whoa, man), though I'll take the Drake nod for now--you're a good ghost and you know it.