Man of Many Hats

Hats, a new work by Dallas-based artist, hacker and musician Paul Slocum, is a take on "the artist in his studio"- a situation so frequently addressed that it is almost a rich art historical genre in its own right. In the minute long snapshot of his computer’s desktop, we see Slocum at work (via his own webcam), focused on on two photos of baseball caps on a chair and a YouTube confessional of a young man musing on his sexual experience. Albeit radically different than Rembrandt's or Johannes Vermeer's portraits of their studio practice, through its multiple layers Hats mines the same territory of process, source material, and artistic identity. In another new work, the Pi Music Generator, Slocum developed a mathematical algorithm that transcribes the infinite digits of Pi into an equally infinite house music track. Slocum assures that if the hardware is properly migrated in the coming years (and his mathematical calculations are correct), his composition will play forever. These works are only two in a group that will be seen in his upcoming solo show More House at Dunn and Brown Contemporary in Dallas. In addition to being an artist, Slocum, along with co-owner Lauren Gray, runs renowned Dallas gallery And/Or, which has continuously hosted strong and progressive media art programming over the past two years. Engaged with the vast terrains of pop and computer culture, Slocum consistently and successfully blends hardware, software and raw source materials to create and curate a distinct continuously expanding body of work. - Caitlin Jones

Image: Paul Slocum, Hats, 2007