Second Gallery is pleased to present Personal Computer, featuring the work of John Michael Boling, Charles Broskoski, and Mark Callahan, curated by and with contributions from Kevin Driscoll with Second Gallery's Rebecca Gordon. Personal Computer critically examines the role of the familiar imagery and symbols of the personal computing experience. The majority of the works in this show are made and displayed on the internet, and Second Gallery aims to provocatively introduce these web-based projects to the physical gallery setting.
Personal Computer relies on the transformative power of confrontation with familiar imagery in new and reconfigured contexts. For many in contemporary culture, the windowed desktop metaphor has achieved the comforting invisibility of the commonplace. After years of daily interaction, these users have developed trusting bonds with their machines that extend to the most intimate corners of their lives. Meanwhile, popular discourse on technology continues to focus on esoteric technical details- bandwidth, disksize, processing power- scarcely acknowledging the peculiar physical relationship users must maintain with their machines, nor the total dominance of the windowing graphical interface. The works in Personal Computer make visible the unseen organizing principles of today's software by repurposing their visual components: sliders, icons, form elements, themes, buttons, and menus. Reinvented apart from the information they typically frame, these ubiquitous materials may have the power to reveal to us new perspectives on our everyday experience.