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ART AFTER NATURE: THE POST-NATURAL CONDITION

Digital rendering of a projection from Lise Autogena and Joshua Portway’s Black Shoals Stock Market Planetarium, 2001/2004.

THE NIGHT SKY may never have looked as disturbingly different as it did in Black Shoals Stock Market Planetarium, 2001/2004, for which the London-based artists Lise Autogena and Joshua Portway projected an array of otherworldly constellations onto a planetarium-style dome. Each astral body corresponds not to nature but to a publicly traded company, as a computer program translates the real-time financial activity of the world’s stock exchanges into glimmering stars. At Tate Britain in 2001, the piece connected to a Reuters news feed; at the Nikolaj Copenhagen Contemporary Art Center in 2004, it was wired to the local stock exchange. Stars flash brightly whenever their stock is traded, gathering into clusters or dispersing according to market momentum. Adding to this celestial panorama of astronomical complexity, the artists introduced digital creatures into the luminous ecosystem.

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