Twitter Blue Changes Will Amplify White Nationalists, Crypto Scammers, and Hardcore Elon Fans
“Starting April 15th, only white nationalists with 30 followers will be in ‘For You’ recommendations.”
Eve 6 band leader and Buzzfeed columnist Max Collins, responding to Elon Musk’s announcement of Twitter Blue favouritism. Cited in Mashable reporter Max Binder’s analysis of the social media company’s flailing subscription game, Collin’s tweet rings true: Half of Twitter Blue users have less than a 1,000 followers and comprise “most often far right wing accounts, cryptocurrency scammers, and hardcore Elon Musk supporters.”
Fondazione Prada Milan Celebrates Fabled Anatomical Venuses in “Cere Anatomiche”

Resurfacing fabled 18th century partially-dissected wax figures used in the study of anatomy, “Cere Anatomiche” opens at Fondazione Prada Milan, presenting four anatomical venuses and 72 drawings from the La Specola collection alongside a companion film by David Cronenberg. Entitled Four Unloved Women, Adrift on a Purposeless Sea, Experience the Ecstasy of Dissection, the Canadian director’s short dwells on how the figures’ uncanny “body language and facial expressions do not display pain or agony.”

EPFL Pavillions Invites Visitors to “Lighten Up!” and Contemplate Benefits of Daylight and Optimized Circadian Rhythms

Foregrounding daylight and circadian rhythms in an era of deleterious screen time, “Lighten Up! On Biology and Time” opens at EPFL Pavillions in Lausanne (CH). Featured are works both evocative and therapeutic, “to remind us of the necessity of regular light exposure for a healthy life,” from artists including Kirell Benzi, Olafur Eliasson, and Anna Ridler. Helga Schmid presents a full-on sleep pod (image: Circadian Dreams, 2022), in which visitors laze and soak up LED lighting calibrated to optimize natural body phases.

MSCHF Creates Cheery (Antithesis of TurboTax) Dating Simulator to Help Americans Do Their Taxes
“If TurboTax is Dark UI, Tax Heaven 3000 is Pink UI, the nightcore of tax software.”
MSCHF co-founder Dan Greenberg, on Tax Heaven 3000 (image, 2023), a forthcoming dating simulator that allows Americans to court Iris, “a cheerful and easygoing girl who is oddly interested in your personal finances,” while doing their taxes
Experimental Popsters 100 Gecs Endorse THX Deep Note as Ultimate ‘PC Music’
“Wanna talk about ‘PC music?’ It’s one cello sample and a computer, baby.”
100 gecs’ Dylan Brady and Laura Les, enthusing about the origins of the THX deep note, the characterful chord that sounds before many motion pictures. Gushing about getting clearance to use it to kickoff their new album, Les describes the soundmark as “beautiful and terrifying.”
Second Issue of Posthumanist Foregrounds Nature’s “Rhythms / Rhythmen”
The Posthumanist 2
Rhythms / Rhythmen
The sophomore issue of the English and German periodical of more-than-human perspectives, featuring art, poetry, and essays from contributors including Delal Seker Bulut, Gertrude Gibbons, Eryk Salvaggio, Helene Schulze, and Elvia Wilk.
Investigative Journalist Deepfakes Donald Trump Arrest

Eliot Higgins, Founder and Creative Director of the investigative journalism group Bellingcat, rattles Twitter with a series of deepfakes depicting Donald Trump’s arrest. Created using the latest version of Midjourney in anticipation of the rumoured bust, the AI-generated images show dramatic (and dramatically convincing) scenes of the former U.S. president wrangling cops and being taken in. In the real world, the Manhattan grand jury investigating Trump has yet to vote on an indictment.

Safety First! Sigal Samuel Argues for Slowing Down the AI Arms Race
“Just as quarantining helped slow the spread of the virus and prevent a sharp spike in cases that could have overwhelmed hospitals’ capacity, investing more in safety would slow the development of AI and prevent a sharp spike in progress that could overwhelm society’s capacity to adapt.”
Vox senior reporter Sigal Samuel, making the case for “flattening the curve” of AI progress
NFT Platform fxhash Announces Functionality That “Enables Collectors to Collaborate in the Creative Process”

Generative art NFT platform fxhash announces a new feature that “enables collectors to collaborate in the creative process.” Entitled fx(params), the functionality allows artists to designate certain parameters (e.g. colour, geometry, velocity) within their code as adjustable for primary market buyers. Instead of leaving an NFT’s appearance entirely to chance, the collector can tweak the artist’s system to their liking before minting their copy (image: fx(params) interface for 1mpo$ter’s Smash, 2023).

“AI Systems May Lose Touch,” K Allado-McDowell Writes About Possible Side Effects of the Machine Learning Revolution
“Without novel human artworks to populate new datasets, AI systems will, over time, lose touch with a kind of ground truth. Might the next version of DALL-E be forced to cannibalize its predecessor?”
– Artist and writer K Allado-McDowell, exploring possible side effects of the AI revolution. “To adapt, artists must imagine new approaches that subvert, advance or corrupt these new systems,” writes Allado-McDowell. “In the 21st century, art will not be the exclusive domain of humans or machines but a practice of weaving together different forms of intelligence.”
Rafael Lozano-Hemmer Honours His Mexican Heritage and San Francisco’s Latinx Community in “TECH-MECHS”

Honouring his Mexican heritage and the Latinx community in San Francisco, “TECH-MECHS,” a survey of Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s interactive installations opens at Gray Area. Featured are lyrical works like Pulse Topology (2021, image), in which 3000 dangling LEDs blink the varying rhythms of visitors’ recorded heartbeats, as well as bleaker perspectives on mortality and self-sovereignty, such as Sway (2016), an upside-down noose that moves from side to side “every time ICE arrests a person, like a metronome.”

Joanne McNeil Reflects on How MySpace Had Neither “the Edge of an NYC Startup nor the Libertarian Spirit of Silicon Valley”
“MySpace had neither the edge of a New York City digital media startup. Nor the loose libertarian spirit of Silicon Valley.”
– American writer Joanne McNeil, recalling a more innocent era of social media. In the first episode of Main Accounts, her new podcast on the rise and fall of MySpace in the 2000s, McNeil engages journalists Julie Angwin and Taylor Lorenz about the social network’s spyware-adjacent origins and its infamous 2005 sale to News Corp.
“Pollution Has Reached Geology,” Researcher Says About Plastic Rocks Found on Remote Brazilian Island

Brazilian researchers report the finding of “plastic rocks” on the remote island of Trindade, part of a volcanic archipelago about 1,100 kilometres off mainland Brazil. Chemical tests revealed the main pollutant forming these plastiglomerates to be synthetic fishing nets that wash ashore and ‘melt’ into the sediment when temperatures rise. “This is new and terrifying at the same time, because pollution has reached geology,” says Fernanda Avelar Santos, a geologist at the Federal University of Parana.

Sarah Ridgley Muses about Posterity of Generative Art Stored on the Blockchain
“It’s a question of permanence. What will last the longest? What will give me the strongest sense of comfort that a work will exist well beyond my lifetime?”
– Software artist Sarah Ridgley, musing about how the code for her generative piece Nymph, in Thy Orisons (2023) is hosted on the decentralized Arweave protocol for posterity. In a Twitter Space with curator Aleksandra Artamonovskaja, and “Code Chronicles” artists including Maya Man and Lia Something, Ridgley and company delve into the details of their ongoing show at Bitforms.
John Michael Boling Restores 2007 Net Art Classic to Former Glory

Internet artist, former Rhizome co-editor, and are.na co-founder John Michael Boling resurrects his 2007 net art piece 20 Years Ago Today along with other parts of 53 os, a collaborative mid-2000s catalogue of GIFs, videos, and quirky web experiments. Cleverly, 20 Years Ago Today moves a playing YouTube panorama sequence across the browser canvas at matching speed, resulting in what net art pioneer Olia Lialina, then, praised as “a shining example of distributed work and tactful appropriation.”

Meredith Broussard Argues Algorithmic Bias Is “More Than a Glitch”
Meredith Broussard
More than a Glitch
Interpreting glitches as a “signal that we need to redesign our systems,” data journalist Broussard highlights algorithmic biases against race, gender, and ability across the tech sector—and suggests a path forward to a more equitable future.
James Bridle and Claire Evans Discuss How “There’s Nothing Unnatural about a Computer”
“The very existence, even the idea of artificial intelligence, is a doorway to acknowledging multiple forms of intelligence and infinite kinds of intelligence, and therefore a radical decentering of the human, which has always accompanied our ideas about AI — but mostly incredibly fearfully.”
Ways of Being (2022) author James Bridle, linking AI with nonhuman (rather than synthetic) intelligence, in conversation with Claire L. Evans
Lorna Mill’s Rowdy GIF Community Takes Over Distant.Gallery Browser Canvas

Lorna Mills’ solo exhibition “The Community of Those Who Have Nothing in Common Part 1” opens online at distant.gallery, populating your browser canvas with dozens of Mill’s eccentric GIFs. Hosted in collaboration with TRANSFER gallery, LA-based curator Kelani Nichole’s digital art imprint and long-time Mills representative, the show also serves as an in-browser gathering for net art enthusiasts: “COME TO THE OPENING,” the Canadian media artist tweeted to her followers. “BE A GIF. BE A FUCKING GIF.”

Gretchen Bender’s CRT Video Works Highlight Media’s Narcotic Visualizations and Homogenized Logics, Critic Says
“Immured like rarefied noctiluca or sliced geodes, these TVs are glitzy shells dramatizing media’s narcotic visualizations with Bender’s surgical editing amplifying the violence of homogenizing logics.”
– Critic Alex Bennett, on Gretchen Bender’s “fierce use of film and television as source material” that’s currently on view at Sprüth Magers, London. The “Image World” solo exhibition presents the American artist’s TV Text & Image series and other single- and multi-channel video works from the 1980s and 90s on CRT monitors and television sets.
Addie Wagenknecht Burns Crypto Boosters as Silicon Valley Bank Collapse Rattles DeFi Space
“Congratulations to everyone who wanted to be bankless, you got what you wanted.”
– American artist Addie Wagenknecht, subtweeting crypto enthusiasts as the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank wreaks havoc across the financial and the DeFi sector. On March 10, the California tech lender was shut down by regulators “after a stunning 48 hours in which a bank run and a capital crisis led to the second-largest failure of a financial institution in US history,” as CNN reports.
United Visual Artists Celebrate 20th Anniversary of Iconic Massive Attack Stage Design

London-based light and media art collective United Visual Artists (UVA) celebrates the 20th anniversary of their studio genesis: Tasked with the (now iconic) stage design of Massive Attack’s 100th Window world tour (2003-4), UVA founders Chris Bird, Matt Clark, and Ash Nehru developed LED typographic displays for politically charged, location-specific real-time data feeds. “At the time, our way of working together was unique,” they write on Instagram. “It went on to inform our practice and studio culture.”

Mario Klingemann Reminds AI Twitter Who Coined Neurography Term (Spoiler: It Was Him)
“Neurography [is] the process of framing and capturing images in latent spaces. The Neurographer controls locations, subjects and parameters.”
– German AI artist Mario Klingemann, citing a tweet from January 2017 in which he first introduced the now more common descriptor. “I coined the term when it became obvious that latent spaces will become a new medium,” Klingemann writes, after fellow digital artist Matt DesLauriers and others pondered its origin.
Aram Bartholl Erects Giant Heart Emoji to Critique Social Media Stranglehold

Berlin-based media artist Aram Bartholl plants a towering heart emoji, or Triangle of Sadness (2023), outside of Stadtgalerie Kiel, Germany, as part of the gallery’s “Tourismus. Let’s do it all” group exhibition. The latest in Bartholl’s series of supersized Internet iconography (Map, 2006-19, This is Fine, 2022) deals with the performative aspects of travel in age of platform capitalism and calls attention to the social cost of algorithmically driven content production and consumption cycles.

Hito Steyerl Describes AI-Generated Images as Mimicking “The Totality of Crap Online”
“No, these renderings do not relate to reality. They relate to the totality of crap online. So that’s basically their field of reference, right? Just scrape everything online and that’s your new reality.”
– German media artist Hito Steyerl, when asked how connected images—“statistical renderings” in her parlance—generated by AI platforms like Midjourney and Stable Diffusion are with reality.
Marcel Schwittlick’s “The Long Run” Plotter Series Marks the End of an Era

Marcel Schwittlick’s solo exhibition “Composition #84: The Long Run” opens at SP2 gallery, Berlin, juxtapozing three eponymous plotter drawings with videos documenting their creation. The pieces, each measuring 36 x 115 cm and comprising 2.5 million dots plotted over 23 hours, record the emptying of a collection of 30-year-old vintage felt tip pens, marking the “end of an era.” Eight stripes per plot, drawn with pens of the same colour, yield subtle variations that tell the “unique history of each pen,” notes Schwittlick.

Nam June Paik Art Center Showcases Works Acquired during COVID-19 Pandemic

A survey of artworks acquired by the Nam June Paik Art Center during its COVID-19 pandemic closure opens in Seoul. “On Collecting Time” presents Kim Heecheon, Sunmin Park, Jinah Roh, Sungsil Ryu, and 6 other artists whose collected works are thematically bound in their exploration of “human and machine time in various forms.” Unmake Lab’s Utopian Extraction (2020, image), for example, pairs video demonstrating janky real-time object detection and documentation of slowly evolving landscapes.

Art Historian Kavior Moon Explains ‘What Is Research-Based Art?’
“The aim was to show how what we consider ‘art’ is not timeless but in fact socially constructed, powerfully conditioned by the conventions and normalizing practices of art institutions.”
– Art historian Kavior Moon, discussing the institutional critique at the heart of Hans Haacke’s Shapolsky et al., a 1971 project documenting a NYC slumlord’s fraud. Full of rich analysis of artists including Maria Eichhorn, Walid Raad, and Hito Steyerl, Moon’s essay comprehensively answers the question ‘what is research-based art?’
“Terms of Use” Explores Tensions between Identity and Virtuality

“Terms of Use,” a show exploring “(re)framing of individual and collective selves, as we grapple with living simultaneously online and AFK,” opens at PHI Foundation in Montreal. Curated by Daniel Fiset and Cheryl Sim, the exhibition draws inspiration from feminists Ursula Franklin and Legacy Russell, and invites artists including Skawennati, Shanie Tomassini, Wu Tsang, Nico Williams, and Chun Hua Catherine Dong (image left: Meet Me Half Way, 2021) to examine tensions between identity and virtuality.

Distinguished Scholars Excoriate ChatGPT
“In the absence of a capacity to reason from moral principles, ChatGPT was crudely restricted by its programmers from contributing anything novel to controversial—that is, important—discussions. It sacrificed creativity for a kind of amorality.”
– Linguistics and AI scholars Noam Chomsky, Ian Roberts, and Jeffrey Watumull, in an op-ed excoriating the “amorality, faux science, and linguistic incompetence” of ChatGPT. “We can only laugh or cry at the popularity of such systems,” they conclude.
Isaac Julien’s “Playtime” Visualizes the Flow of Capital during the Onset of the Great Recession

Serendipitously coinciding with an economy on the brink, Isaac Julien’s multiscreen installation Playtime (2014, image) opens at Berlin’s PalaisPopulaire. Set during the 2008-09 financial crisis that catalyzed the Great Recession, the filmmaker experiments in visualizing the flow of capital from the perspective of seven interlinked characters (a pair of hedge fund managers, a journalist, an artist, an art dealer, an auctioneer, and a maid) whose lives and ventures span Dubai, London, and Reykjavík.

SUPERR Lab Publishes Feminist Tech Policy Resource Just in Time for International Women’s Day
“Digitization reproduces and deepens existing social inequalities in regards to access to digital services, presence and visibility on platforms as well as discrimination through algorithmic decision making.”
– Equity advocates SUPERR Lab, contextualizing why feminist digital policy is necessary. Published in English just in time for International Women’s Day, their resource defines feminist tech policy, and provides case studies and references for further research.
Jenny Odell Is “Saving Time” from Capitalism and the Attention Economy
Jenny Odell
Saving Time
An analysis of how our sense of time is structured by the relentless demands of capitalism, and a counterproposition arguing for “different rhythms of life.”
Veteran Digital Art Curator Christiane Paul Ignites NFT “Chain Reaction” for Feral File

“Chain Reaction,” a collection of NFTs curated by Christiane Paul, is released on Feral File. Artists including Stephanie Dinkins, Sara Ludy, and Jennifer & Kevin McCoy contribute NFTs that probe the “social, aesthetic, and environmental contexts and networks in which these assets are embedded.” Ira Greenberg & Marina Zurkow’s The Dorises (image, 2023), for example, takes the programmable rarity associated with the medium, and uses it to generate weird oyster physiology and lore.

Neural’s “Strange Weathers” Issue Compiles Recent History of Meteorology in Art and Digital Culture
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Strange Weathers
Guest-editors Daphne Dragona and Jussi Parikka explore weather and the disrupted climate as sites for digital culture and artistic intervention. Highlights include interviews with Karolina Sobecka, Superflux, open-weather, Lise Autogena & Joshua Portway, and Jana Winderen.
78 Million Artworks Removed from AI Training, Artist-Activist Group Says
“We are thrilled to announce that our campaign to gather artist opt outs has resulted in 78 million artworks being opted out of AI training.”
– AI artist-activist group Spawning, on the success of haveibeentrained.com, a tool that allows artists to search for their works in the Stable Diffusion training set and exclude them from further use. “This establishes a significant precedent towards realizing our vision of consenting AI,” write Spawning founders Mat Dryhurst and Holly Herndon.
Anna Engelhardt and Mark Cinkevich Render Horror of Russian Colonialism at Aksioma

Anna Engelhardt and Mark Cinkevich’s single-channel video installation Onset (2023) opens at Aksioma, Ljubljana. Co-commissioned by transmediale, the film draws on medieval demonology, open-source intelligence, and CGI animation to ‘haunt’ Russian air bases the duo reconstructed from satellite imagery. “The true horror of Russian colonialism becomes manifest in the process of possession,” the artists write, “the imposition of external control that gradually destroys an organism from within.”

MoMA Video Art Survey Captures How Medium Transformed the World

“Signals: How Video Transformed the World” opens at New York’s MoMA, showcasing over 70 media works from the past six decades that capture how “artists have posed video as an agent of global change—from televised revolution to electronic democracy.” Highlights include Nam June Paik’s Good Morning Mr. Orwell (1984), Ant Farm’s Media Burn (1973), Martine Syms’ Lessons I–CLXXX (2014–18), and Dara Birnbaum’s Tiananmen Square: Break-In Transmission (1990, image).

Edward Ongweso Jr. On ChatGPT Rollout: “The Correct Analysis Is OpenAI Lied”
“What we actually saw was a preview of what future products will look like. A lot of hype, a lot of misstatements, and an exploitation of people’s lack of knowledge about what cognition is and what artificial systems can do.”
– Tech critic Edward Ongweso Jr., on the ChatGPT launch. “The correct analysis is they lied. They lied about its capabilities, they rolled out what was possible, and they’re going to keep lying,” he adds, describing how OpenAI cynically overhyped a half-baked product to capture the public’s attention—and drive up their valuation.
Paul Kremer’s ChatGPT Flower Forms Bloom at LSC Gallery, Detroit

Paul Kremer’s solo exhibition “Spring” opens at Library Street Collective (LSC) in Detroit, featuring a new body of paintings dependent on experiments in tool-making. Inspired by the simplicity of Henri Matisse’s découpés, Houston-based Kremer turned to ChatGPT to prototype a series of composition tools he then, with the help of digital artist Leander Herzog, developed into a “suite of personalized art-making software.” The resulting Blooms (2023) resemble abstract flower forms in striking colours.

Neil Stephenson Thinks Its Time for Web3 to Lose “Single-Minded Effort to Financialize Everything”
“I’m hoping we can move away from this single-minded effort to financialize everything and start trying to develop a more diverse economy that, by virtue of diversity, would be a more stable economy.”
– Science fiction author Neil Stephenson, on how Web3 needs to outgrow speculation. Discussing the metaverse (a term he coined in his 1992 novel Snow Crash), he notes that in virtual spaces “sooner or later people want to do something besides talk and do little emotes,” citing Epic Games’ Fortnite as striking a good balance of socializing and activity.
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