Inspired by the Choose Your Own Adventure book series first popularized in the 1980s, artist Dasha Ilina and screenwriter Sofia Haines launch Choose Your Own Quarantine, a web-based game about navigating uncertainties during the pandemic. “The user is presented with a scenario that initially follows the real timeline of COVID-19 development,” write the artists, “but as the game goes on, users will notice that the options become increasingly speculative and fictitious.” Which values, practices, and cultures will ultimately be enduring, and which may become outdated remnants of the pre-pandemic world?
A physical articulation of invisible data flows, Mario Santamaría’s Unfixed Infrastructures and Rabbit Holes (2020) opens at Aksioma, Ljubljana. The Spanish media artist programmed a “rabbit hole” network to cycle signals through different geolocations, seeking the maximum possible route allowed by network protocols. The delay—a measure of the materiality of digital time—is visualised by two screens video-streaming a Foucault pendulum, one connected to the gallery WiFi, the other to the “rabbit hole” network.
“Unmanned aircraft were seen as popular because U.S. soldiers didn’t have to go to the battlefield. But what about the casualties in the countries that were attacked by our drones?“ American artist Sam Durant asks in a wide-ranging interview about his new public artwork Untitled (drone). “The idea was to bring this conversation home to America.” Originally conceived in 2016, Durant’s life-sized fiberglass sculpture of a Predator drone will be installed atop a 25-foot-tall pole on New York’s High Line in May.
Artists Ben Rubin and Brian House’s “Terminal Moraine” opens at Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. Taking a meta-historical approach, its lone eponymous work models the local impact of the Laurentide ice sheet. Approximately 18,000 years ago, the 600 metre wall of ice flowed down the Hudson Valley and shaped the landscape—Rubin and House simulate the glacial retreat and forest growth that followed. In their sonification “cells expand and branch while crystalline structures gradually break apart,” helping listeners contemplate the deep time of history.
A collaboration between sound designer Yuri Suzuki and musical artist and composer Miyu Hosoi, Crowd Cloud is unveiled at Haneda Airport, Japan. The site-specific installation distils the vowels of the Japanese language, sung by Hosoi, creating a unique composition that emanates from a choir of dozens of standing horns that converse with each other like people. Crowd Cloud is part of the Paola Antonelli-curated “Culture Gate” exhibition that sees artists offer fresh interpretations of Japan’s diverse culture in airports across the country.
With “Take Me to Another World,” the first-ever Charlotte Johannesson retrospective opens at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid. Named after a computer graphic the Swedish artist created in the 1980s, the survey traces 60 years of Johannesson’s image-making between craft and technology. A textile artist who turned to computer programming (in 1978, the autodidact swapped her loom for an Apple II Plus), Johannesson’s political tapestries are inwoven with 1960s counterculture, punk, and feminism.
A reimagination of Hieronymus Bosch’s iconic triptych for the digital age, Carla Gannis’ The Garden of Emoji Delights opens at Stockholm’s Fotografiska. In her 2014 collage, the American artist explores how Bosch’s visual world from 500 years ago matches our emoji dictionary, circa now. “There is humour, darkness, and absurdity,” state the curators. “Earthly, cosmological, and technological conditions are combined,” revealing ideologies and social constructs that have remained unchanged for centuries.