Shift Gallery Pioneer Square
July 6–28, 2018, Fridays–Saturdays
Recommended by Joule Zelman
"Commercial Technological Persuasive Capitalism Coexistence": This is Craig van den Bosch's term for the state of media distraction in which we steep. For this show, he situates this crisis of awareness in a sci-fi narrative, in which two capsules containing DNA-encoded messages are found in Mexico's Giant Crystal Cave. The hidden missives from a "distant civilization" were then translated by UW scientists and Microsoft and included in van den Bosch's retro-futurist collages. These mixed color and black-and-white images strike a vein of space-age wonder—think vivid planetscapes, 1950s-era suited figures, and images of vintage machinery—as well as cynicism toward the outcome of this technophilia. Has technology done more to free us or further entrap us, changing our minds and bodies to elites' caprices? And, as the DNA-coding framing suggests, how long will it be before media manipulation burrows into our most essential selves?