The Download
The Download is a new program through which Rhizome shares one work per month for free download. Part curatorial platform, part incentive to budding digital art collectors, the Download highlights new works and encourages display at home-on any screen, computer, or suitable device.

American Cypher (2012)

101MB .mov file, dimensions variable

American Cypher is a suite of projects that respond to American stories about race and DNA. The first module of this project was a sound installation commissioned by Bucknell University, inspired by Thomas Jefferson (the 3rd US president) and Sally Hemings (his slave and, as DNA tests confirm, mother to his children). The piece that we've made for the Download series is a performance score. The image in the video was recorded in the basement of Jefferson's plantation, Monticello, in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Download Archive

Once you've completed downloading the video file, double click to unarchive (unzip) the file. You can view American Cypher in your favorite media player such as QuickTime, VLC or iTunes.

About the Artist

Mendi + Keith Obadike make music, art and literature. Their honors include a Rockefeller New Media Arts Fellowship, Pick Laudati Award for Digital Art, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Fiction, and a Vectors Fellowship from USC. Their intermedia work has been commissioned by The NY African Film Festival and Electronic Arts Intermix, The Yale Cabaret, Whitechapel Art Gallery (London), and The Whitney Museum of Art, among other institutions.

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