“I love the language. Words have temperatures to me. When they reach a certain point and become hot words, then they appeal to me.”
The fictitious names spammers create for their senders feel like “hot” words. They were the starting point for this work. In order to circumvent the filters designed to keep them out, email spammers auto-generate a host of virtual senders. Aiming to conserve something generated in an ephemeral process I rescued these names and collected them. The deluge of spam continued to fill my mailbox over the project, messages designed to entice us and prey on our weakness.
The endless generation of names creates unexpected and humorous combinations. These unwanted incomers assume a kind of personality through the names they are given. These populations of non-entities stream our inboxes until we empty them in a perpetual tidal cycle. I am interested in this irrepressible filling and refilling of email and the impact of managing this bombardment has on personal space. Order must be kept: we must keep order.
The animation developed through a crossbreeding. A “hairpin” style font was brought together with the quality of the shadow from a hair on the surface of a bathtub.
The sound investigates another possibility for the unwanted remains of these namings. A voice reads the names that continued to be gathered but were left behind in the process of the animation; a “storm” engages a voice and suggests the possibility of hearing the sound of the tireless flow of information.
Thanks to Les at Woodtex, in Ngaruawahia, and Geoff Ridder for their generous assistance.
Howardena Pindell, “Words with Ruscha,” Print Collector’s Newsletter, January / February 1973, 125-28.