I gave a lecture at RISD for its Spring Graphic Design Speaker Series. Here’s the recording of the lecture, which covers the past several years of projects:
Thanks to RISD Graphic Design for the invitation!
2022 Knight Arts + Tech Fellowship
I’m one of the 5 recipients of the 2022 Knight Arts + Tech Fellowship. Thank you very much to the Knight Foundation and to United States Artists, which administered the award, for the support!
Darla Migan has written a wonderful essay on my practice for Shift Space, an online publication edited by Natalia Zuluaga as part of the fellowship.
Insofar as we are always being configured for identification, Kuo’s net-based art or video installations are written neither for technologists nor for art audiences per se but may be better understood as epistles to, or apologia on, self-formation happening within the loops of machine/user learning. We learn to use machines and in the process of doing so we also increase their literacy of the user, opening us up to even greater portals of access through the simulation of shared understanding.
Read (or listen to!) A Poetics of the Glaze.
Artist Profile: Nathalie Lawhead
I interviewed Nathalie Lawhead for Rhizome! Nathalie’s work is incredibly inspiring, and it was a privilege to collaborate on this article about the nonsensical internet, the demise of Flash, indie games, and digital self-preservation.
RK: I really admire how you not only state, but literally manifest, the themes of survival and self-preservation in your work. You consider digital art to be inherently ephemeral, and so your works depict graveyards and dismembered, skeletal systems that literally fall apart at the touch. Spirits and vermin inhabit these spaces, and as the creator, you are ever-present. You are both self-aware and prophetic about the eventual death of your work, which frequently reads like its own eulogy. How does your physical body relate to the digital structures you create?
NL: Oh man... That's well said. Yes, I'm constantly tormented by the inevitable doom of my work. I keep making it and now I have to maintain something like 40 games. I have to update them, make sure they are all converted from 32-bit to 64-bit, and don't get wiped out by major OS updates. The struggle to not let it just vanish into the digital void is real.
The ephemeral nature of digital art fascinates me, but it's also terrifying. As an artist, I want to be remembered for my art. I want people to enjoy it long after I'm gone. At least that's the promise of art. Art definitely becomes more meaningful when it ages, and when it's taken out of context of the zeitgeist it was made under. You can't have that with digital art. An indie game today will last about five years before becoming obsolete or just unplayable. It seems so irrational to me that you can spend more years making a game than it will be playable.
Read the profile.
Tables of Content in Rhizome ArtBase
My 2017 work Tables of Content was accessioned to Rhizome’s ArtBase as part of the “Executable Poetry” open call, along with works by 14 other artists.
Rhizome’s digital preservation team is now in the process of creating archival variants of each artwork, which can include dynamic web archives and containerized web servers. Entries for each work have also been created in the new ArtBase, which uses a groundbreaking Linked Open Data model for organizing knowledge about born-digital art.
Hateful Little Thing
Whitney Museum of American Art
Oct 27, 2021 - May 24, 2022
My project Hateful Little Thing launches today on the website of the Whitney Museum. It briefly takes over the site at sunrise and sunset (EST) every day.
The work hijacks the curatorial label that brands the Sunrise/Sunset series and pursues its own argument against its support, which never manages to complete before common sense prevails. This argument takes a different form each time.
Addressing the act of taking up “white space”—in the sense of both the white background of whitney.org and the structural whiteness of institutional power—the comments of the Hateful Little Thing highlight the complexities of hate, racism, and exclusion. The short texts allude to the erasures that take place in white space, talk back to the institution, engage its audience, and comment on the hypocrisies surrounding hatred, such as the insistence that hate has no place in society, even though it always existed.
This hateful little thing wants to impress upon everyone the latter point, which still eludes many.
Many thanks to Christiane Paul for curating the work, and to Colin Brooks for technical support.