Jenny Holzer meets Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

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Brazilian artist Giselle Beiguelman has a new public installation, 'Poetrica,' that is currently exploding on advertising billboards across some of Sao Paulo's busiest streets. Participate can submit messages for display on these billboards by web, WAP, or SMS. First, one writes a messages and converts it into a non-phonetic font such as Ewok or Alchemy. The highly visual messages are archived on the web site via web cams surveilling the billboards and in an online gallery section. 'Poetrica' will email participants when their messages are to go live on the streets, as well. Interestingly, like Rafael Lozano-Hemmer's 'Amodal Suspension' (November 2003, in Yamaguchi, Japan), 'Poetrica' offers participants a way to occupy urban space with a coded, semi-public, semi-private message. Replacing advertisements with internationally-authored coinages and aphorisms, 'Poetrica' represents another colonization of sorts: the invasion of information and communication technologies into advertising and commerce. This collaborative public project ends 8 November, so get your flicker in soon. -- Rachel Greene