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An act of benevolent shaming: re-fabricated moon rocks

3d software, 3d printed plastic filament, cut vinyl, paint, text, podium.
Artwork by [user-name]

"An act of benevolent shaming" is an act of recompense for past transgressions and absent-mindedness: the re-fabrication of the lost moon rocks.

Over 840 lbs of soil samples and rocks were brought to earth by the Apollo astronauts. These are distinct from objects which have, unaided by human endeavor, otherwise made their way earthward (chunks of the moon, for example, dislodged by meteorites). Of these samples, an alarming and embarrassing amount have "gone missing". Inspired by images of “Lunar Sample 71575”, for instance, nestled amongst its brethren, I am attempting to put the band back together again.

There are 12 moon rocks. 12 like the number of the apostles, or inches in a foot, or the hours in a half day: a form of marking that dates from a time when math and fiction shared more common roots.

The rocks were fabricated using a 3d printer. The models were created using a mix of applications, including Blender, Sketchup, and netfabb Studio. From bits to solid forms: a sort of modern alchemy. There is also a stylized cut-vinyl crater on the wall. Brand awarness and logos have of course now made their way to the moon.

"An act of benevolent shaming" is part of an ongoing project which combines images, objects, and text.  Titled "Moonfarming - an Illustrated Encyclopedia" the project is an experment in 3d storytelling, exploring nostalgia, data, and the common need for a place of fantasy.

Marginalia: Crawl

Vinyl window blinds, 14 min video loop, video projector
Marginalia: Crawl

Multiple iterations of the artist crawl along a set of narrow strips. From Marginalia, a series of performance-based video compositions projected onto walls that explore the body's relationship to marginal aspects of our environments.

See video

something mechanical in something living

laser cut white and reflective silver vinyl, paint
Artwork by [user-name]

something mechanical in something living documents my astoundingly unsuccessful attempt to “train” Dragon system’s speech to text translation software. Following several minutes of misinterpretations I began to laugh. The microphone continued to record my sounds and the software struggled dutifully to interpret my apparent words. The more I read the resulting text the harder I laughed, becoming a self-generating humor machine.

The title of the piece is taken from a work by Henri Bergson - Laughter: An Essay on the Meaning of Comic.


plywood, digital print on vinyl, booklets, chains
Artwork by [user-name]

MOONPENNY is the code name for a series of structures at the US satellite and communications base at RAF Menwith Hill, near Harrogate in Yorkshire: part of the Echelon global electronic surveillance system run by the NSA. Menwith Hill is a *listening* station, as opposed to a broadcast station (such as the Lincolnshire Poacher number station) in the global spy network. It uses sophisticated equipment to monitor various forms of communication (phone, email etc), searching for particular targeted words and phrases. Set in the heather speckled moors of northern England the installation contains numerous geodesic radar domes (called "radomes") as well as a series of interconnecting roads and a central set of buildings. MOONPENNY is the rather poetic designation for the radio dishes contained within these radome structures.

MOONPENNY (the work of art) is a vector rendering of the Google maps aerial photograph of the Menwith Hill site. In keeping with several earlier works it addresses issues of secrecy, communication, forbidden territories, and the natural environment. Like much of my work MOONPENNY is also an investigation of mimesis and abstraction: the point at which a reproduction becomes sufficiently divorced from its referent as to become an object on its own. Finally, MOONPENNY comes with its own miniature library: print-outs of text and images culled from the internet and held in place by chains that mimic those of medieval libraries. I enjoy the humor of reversing the trajectory from print-to-e and of making copies "precious"; it does also make browsing rather easy.

Lincolnshire Poacher

Printed vinyl, wood, plastic, FM transmitter, radios, audio
Artwork by [user-name]

“- Shortwave numbers stations are a social experiment being conducted by the aliens.
- Actually they are mostly tenticle-enlargement spam, but we don't have the proper char-set support yet. Hopefully this will be included in Vista.(1)”

Lincolnshire Poacher combines a number of my fascinations: Google maps, text, sound, nature, camouflage, humor(2), and enigma. Its subject is the most famous of the cold war era Number Stations(3): the similarly named Lincolnshire Poacher. The Lincolnshire Poacher broadcast for over 30 years always using the same format: the (sampled) voice of an English woman reading out sets of 5 digit numbers, prefaced by 10 repetitions of one set of 5 numbers and bookended by several bars of the English folk song “The Lincolnshire Poacher”. I am intrigued by Number Stations for a variety of reasons, particularly their reductivist use of text to pass secrets by the most public of methods.

The piece’s main element is a vector drawing based on the Google maps aerial photograph of Akrotiri, Cyprus: the presumed location of the Lincolnshire Poacher. An orange dot on the drawing marks the likely location of the station's transmitter believed to have been operated by the British Secret Intelligence Service. A series of additional orange dots within the exhibit lead to the location of a sound piece: a recreation of an actual broadcast by the Lincolnshire Poacher station made in October 2004.

I have been fascinated, if not obsessed, with Google maps for almost two years. The resulting undertakings are a reflection of my examinations of mimetic process, a sense of unrequited wanderlust, and a latent fondness for the cold war's quaintly stylized tropes of aggression: poisoned umbrellas tips, modems in the stratosphere(4), and Number Stations. A reflection of my own peripatetic history (I am a multinational and have travelled widely) Lincolnshire Poacher is simultaneously symptomatic of my rooted present. I am now an armchair traveler who indulges my yearnings through virtual wandering in forbidden spaces.

1 - Comments about an August 2006 article on Slashdot about VoIP Number Stations:

2 - I was pleased to discover during the course of my research that there is a type of artisanal cheese named Lincolnshire Poacher.

3 - for additional information about number stations see

4 - sputnik

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