Pieces of Me
Transfer Gallery x left gallery
Apr 1, 2021 - ∞
I am showing work online in Pieces of Me, “an exhibition of offerings to the aggregate hype of the emerging global NFT marketplace.”
The work is File, a tokenized work that Nora N. Khan commissioned for left gallery in 2016. At that time the concept of tethering art to a blockchain wasn't known by its acronym and so the questions prompted by the technology were better able to surface. Rather than questions about the acronym and what the acronym purported to signify, they were basic questions about ownership and value, which haven’t changed except for how they manifest on the back end.
In the File I cautiously circle around and poke at the idea that a person would want to own something of mine, in a manner that is permanent, which imparts a finality to our relation. File begins to spell out a lexicon to address this finality, and lands on a notion of a "contingency reserve" that essentially says: my work is me, and you can buy a piece of my work, but my work is tethered to me.
I continue to update this work, sometimes by making new works, and each update is an act of deferral of “ownership”. The File continues to be available on left gallery as a tokenized artwork, but I’m also giving it away in Pieces of Me, knowing that no one will fully own it.
Installed in the show is an interactive preview of the File that redirects the user elsewhere.
Apart from this, Transfer Gallery and left gallery seem to have developed a genuinely equitable infrastructure for tokenizing artworks, with an emphasis on artist rights and ownership (over desperation and excess). Read Harm’s take on NFTs and sustainability.
Mar 8, 2021 - Apr 4, 2021
I’ve remade my work OK. (2018) as a web application and revised the script for 2021.
OK2 is on display at Boston Cyberarts as part of Message Received, alongside work by Furen Dai and Gabriel Sosa. Thanks to Jameson Johnson for organizing.
You can access it here. It’s mobile-friendly, but the desktop version (below) is fancier and can be played on a keyboard.
Interview with Brett Wallace
I had a conversation with the artist Brett Wallace on protests, silent majorities, Silicon Valley, and artistic influences.
BW: It seems that online dynamics across the political spectrum are one of your investigative inquiries. How do you research the concept of whiteness as it relates to technology and protocols? What does your research process usually entail?
RK: I wouldn't call my work research, because it has no defined methodology. There are many analytical gestures present in the work, but it is mainly an intuitive process. Things become interesting to me through my body, which is continually being subjected to expectations, interpretations, and desires. I read these as attempts to make me into a subject, and I respond as an object that takes up space. In other words, I tend to detach myself from everyday processes of subject formation, a habit I picked up from growing up in a racist town. This is an important first step in reflecting those processes back at the people actively engaged in them. I deliberately work in a space where subject and object are collapsed or interchangeable, which is one way that I consider this an art and not a research practice.
Read it at Conversation Project NYC.
Plicnik Space Initiative
Oct 15, 2020 - Oct 15, 2021
A new work, Dumb Desire, is on view in the maintenance shoulder of the spacecraft D02.2. The work launched with 19 others as part of Plicnik Space Initiative, a speculative exhibition in outer space.
Dumb Desire is a software application that depicts a minimal game space that adjusts itself endlessly in real-time, invoking a consciousness that belongs to either a body or its container.