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Digital Bodies: Micah Hesse

Jan. 2 – Feb. 4, 2018

Projection Gallery

Micah Hesse, ​Lonely Without a Company​, 2015. Courtesy the artist.

In ​Lonely Without a Company​, Micah Hesse uses video, CGI animation, and 3D tracking to explore the convergence of economics and linguistics. Composed as a visual lyric essay, the video deftly blends the literal and the metaphorical, playing with dualities in meaning. Economic jargon is visually illustrated—intangible terms such as bubbles, corporations, money, and even the “hand of the market” take physical form. Narrative voice-overs and brief monologues by the artist accompany the imagery, playfully questioning exact meanings, functions, and origins. Economists, Hesse posits, are just romantics who get serious about inventing new metaphors so that people will fall in love with their theories. This blending of information and speculation, the real and the surreal, allows the artist to sift through the mundanities and investigate the history (and humor) in these often-inscrutable economic terms and concepts.

Digital Bodies

In a time of embedded lives and networked culture, where the screen acts as a mediator between the self and perceived reality, technology has ostensibly become an extension of the body, changing our relationship to space, ourselves, and others. ​Digital Bodies​ is a one-year program that features videos by artists who use and manipulate digital technologies—mainly computer-generated images, signs, and systems sourced from digital platforms—to reflect on how these technologies have impacted our everyday lives and changed the ways we relate to the world. Given our current state of constant digital expansion and acceleration, these works express the pervasiveness and indispensability of digital culture in shaping our daily interactions.

Digital Bodies​ is organized by the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University and curated by Carla Acevedo-Yates and Steven L. Bridges, Associate Curators. Support for this exhibition is provided by the Alan and Rebecca Ross endowed exhibitions fund and the MSU Broad's general exhibitions fund.