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Andrea Crespo, virocrypsis, 2015, digital video, color, sound, 16 minutes 5 seconds.

Andrea Crespo

Swiss Institute / CONTEMPORARY ART

Andrea Crespo, virocrypsis, 2015, digital video, color, sound, 16 minutes 5 seconds.

Cynthia and Celinde share a body. They have two heads, three legs, a slightly widened torso, and sixteen amphibian-like toes. Wearing a midriff-exposing tank top and short shorts, the two are rendered simply, as an anime-inspired sketch, and barely animated (they blink). But, though this is how they appear in virocrypsis (all works 2015), the centerpiece of Andrea Crespo’s exhibition at Swiss Institute, we soon learn that the artist’s conjoined protagonists weren’t born this way—or born at all. At the start of the looping video, the vertical bar of a scan head travels across the screen slowly, back and forth with its cold light, as we see a fragmented hand wearing grown-out periwinkle nail polish, then a shot of a robotic lab dropper and petri dish. Next, we’re peering through a cracked window, or maybe into a damaged monitor. Gradually, Cynthia and Celinde appear, a white

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