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AMERICAN ARTIST: BLACK GOOEY UNIVERSE
Jan 26—Feb 16

Opening Reception
Jan 26 7—10pm

An excerpt from the text, Black Gooey Universe, by American Artist, as featured in UNBAG issue 2:

Blackness has, so to say, formed the ground for white, with black gooey being antithetical to the values of the white screen. Black gooey might then be a platform of slowness (“dragged time”, “colored time”4), refusal, thought, complexity, critique, softness, loudness, transparency, uselessness, and brokenness. A planar body that longs for the solitude and vastness of the command-line, yet nuanced and sharp, to usurp and destroy a contemporary hegemonic interface.

As there can be no form to it, denying both a canonical hardware and interface, where does the black screen reside? Building on brokenness, or the break, we take up Frank Wilderson’s proposal to remain in the hold, within a broken (too slow, too complex) interface, to analyze and comprehend a totalizing anti-blackness. Fred Moten’s fantasy in the hold then opens a new line of inquiry: how a broken screen—situated against whiteness, unfixable, unfixed—might operate.

When some say “black gooey is unusable and unknowable,” its users, programmers, those dwellers of brokenness, will reply “for who?”


HOUSING is pleased to present a solo exhibition by American Artist.

American Artist (b. 1989 Altadena, CA) is an interdisciplinary artist whose work extends dialectics formalized in Black radicalism and organized labor into a context of networked virtual life. Their practice makes use of video, installation, new media, and writing to reveal historical dynamics embedded within contemporary culture and technology.

American Artist’s legal name change serves as the basis of an ambivalent practice—one of declaration: by insisting on the visibility of blackness as descriptive of an american artist, and erasure: anonymity in virtual spaces where “American Artist” is an anonymous name, unable to be googled or validated by a computer as a person’s name.

American attended the Whitney Independent Study program as an artist, and is currently a resident at Eyebeam. They have exhibited at The Kitchen, New York, the Studio Museum of Harlem, and have participated in group shows internationally. They have published writing in The New Inquiry and New Criticals and have had work featured in AQNB, and Huffington Post. American is a co-founder of the arts and politics publication UNBAG