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Monthly Archives: May 2010

Of Synthetic Cells and Digital Media

Thanks to J. Craig Venter’s just-announced “synthetic” cell, there now exists “the first self-replicating species we’ve had on the planet whose parent is a computer.” His team managed to synthesize a length of DNA consisting of a million units and plant it into a bacterial cell, taking over the cell’s functions via what is referred [...]

“Bodies in Question,” After Photography in French

I have just curated the New York Photo Festival exhibition “Bodies in Question,” concerning human and virtual bodies, the ailing planet, and the troubled body politic, with fourteen artists represented. An excellent analysis of the exhibition by Leo Hsu appears on, focusing on Marc Garanger’s 1960 identity photographs of Algerian women made for the [...]

Inconvenient Truths

The recent decision by Current TV to go after photographer Ken Light in a higher court is quite extraordinary. Ken had been awarded $588 by small claims court because Al Gore’s Current TV had used a 1994 photograph by Ken without either crediting or paying him, linking to it on the New Yorker site. Then [...]