My boyfriend came back from the war is one of the first engaging hyper text net art narrative in which the story unfolds by clicking on images and texts in various sized windows within the frame. Created by Olia Lialina in 1996, this work will always be considered a classic.
In their 2006 Taschen publication "New Media Art," Mark Tibe and Reena Jana write: "One indicator of the historical significance of Olia Lialina's 1996 Netart project, My Boyfriend Came Back From the War (MBCBFTW), is the numerous times it has been appropriated and remixed by other New Media artists. On her Web site, Lialina maintains an extensive list of these appropriations that includes versions in Flash, Real Audio, VRML, the Castle Wolfenstein game engine (Mac and PC), PowerPoint and video. There is even a blog version and a version in gouache on paper. But what is it that makes this particular work so influential? Perhaps it resonates with other artists because it is among the earliest works of New Media art to produce the kind of compelling and emotionally powerful experience that we have come to expect from older, more established media, particularly film."
About Olia Lialina
A pioneer of net art, artist and film and new media critic Olia Lialina is well known for her famous browser-art piece, My Boyfriend Came Back From The War (1996). The work comprises multiple black-and-white hyperlinked frames of images and text through which viewers can navigate different narrative pathways. “If something is in the net,” Lialina has said, “it should speak in net language.” The piece has inspired numerous tribute artworks and remixes, including one from the notorious duo JODI. Lialina is also known for using herself as a model in experimentations with animated GIFs, and is credited with founding one of the earliest web galleries, Art Teleportacia, which she uses to exhibit her own work.
Russian, b. 1971, Moscow, Russia