I agree with Walter Benjamin that “ever greater degree the work of art reproduced becomes the work of art designed for reproducibility”. The development of new media has provided an efficient tool for artist. Today, the majority of artists use digital media as part of their work: If not as primary method, at least as way to spread their production. However, I think that every artist or designer still have keen interest to make some unique, which can be recognized as their work.
In the urban areas of developed countries, this can be seen especially in our consumption habits. Ordinary isn’t any longer enough, and many consumers have started to prefer individualized items such as cellphone covers, custom-made jeans, and mugs with your own pictures. Many global companies also try to take the advantage of the raise of individuality. Adidas has tried to catch more individualistic consumers with its mass-customized miAdidas concept in which consumer can choose models, fabrics and colours for their shoes (Image below).
Although, there is quite a long way from photography and film to mass-customized products. Still, I consider that they belong to the same development path of new media. Due this development, authenticity isn’t vanishing away but it’s changing its shape: Authenticity of today is the combination of individual selections you make.
(1) Adidas (2010). miadidas. Retrieved 09/09/2011 from http://norimansaffian.blogspot.com/2010/07/mi-adidas.html