Lingua Ex Machina

Historically, the evolution of language moved only as fast as humans could walk. But then came the Morse telegraph, radio, and the Telex, cutting down messaging time from days to hours to minutes. And now, there’s the Internet, a globe-choking network of networks that’s constantly feeding information to billions at an incomparable clip in both code — HTML, Java, PHP, etc. — and encoded versions of English — initialisms, emoticons, Lolspeak, etc.

The new solo show, “Words,” by Caracas-born poet and artist Yucef Merhi deploys old and new, factory-made and home-hacked, obsolete and up-to-date technologies to track the superspeed mutation of modern language. Using networked Atari consoles, synchronized light installations, and custom web-based software, Merhi sends phrases like “Breeding sculptures of Siamese wolves” through the matrix of artist, user, and machine. These are word games beyond the page.
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: May 20. Continues through June 8, 2010

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