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Don’t try to pronounce the name of [dNASAb], the Brooklyn-based sculptor and mixed media artist whose work is currently exploded across the surfaces of Irvine Contemporary Gallery. The moniker stands for Disney-NASA-Borg, which tells you plenty about this artist whose works are chaotic, hyper-chromatic assemblages of torn-apart technology.
For his solo show “Dataklysmos,” [dNASAb] engages in “communication graffiti,” in which he tears apart and reworks materials from iPods, computers, and televisions to comment on our relationship with technology. The show closes Saturday.
With no formal background in computer science, [dNASAb] approaches technology as a user. Part of the impulse for “Dataklysmos,” he says, is to use the gadgetry his artwork thinks about as the medium itself. He says today’s artists don’t “utilize the hardware and the tools that are in each of our houses…I think at the same time when canvases and paints were the technology of the times they were being utilized, so now we have to utilize the hardware we accept on a daily basis.”
Here, that hardware includes LCD screens, cables, wires, fiber-optics, monitors, and an iPod. The sculptures are striking in their sense of motion and fluorescence. Despite the familiarity of their parts, as a whole seem they feel like alien forms defiantly hovering in the air-conditioned stillness.
[dNASAb] says he rejects the conception of technology as clean and streamlined, instead creating confrontationally explosive sculptures. “What I’m doing is simultaneously commenting on motion, direction, and velocity of technology and how they are expanding exponentially in every direction and every sort of way that affects our lives.”
The artist’s sculptures resemble the mazes of cables and wires that give these machines life—-the parts we prefer to have contained by plastic shelling. This is wholly intentional. For [dNASAb], the “rat’s nest” is the key to understanding technology and how it is evolving. Data, above all else, is what interests [dNASAb]. “In the past if someone was to steal your Iphone, you’d probably put an insurance policy on the iPhone itself, but things have really changed completely to the point where, if you lost your iPhone, what percentage of yourself have you lost by losing the vessel?”
“Dataklysmos” is on view 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Irvine Contemporary, 1412 14th St. NW. Free.
Image courtesy oIrvine Contemporary and the artist