Ceri Hand Gallery, 12 Cotton Street, Liverpool, Merseyside L3 7DY

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Juneau Projects review by Peter Merrington

Juneau Projects’ solo exhibition at Ceri Hand Gallery in Liverpool, UK is a colourful, mechanical, collision. The show has a number of elements comprising, music, technology, nature, painting and retro-futurism, under the title 3 Megabytes of Hot RAM, a phase taken from William Gibson’s Neuromancer, an early 80’s cyberpunk novel about the adventures of a computer hacker.

The artist pair Philip Duckworth and Ben Sadler, who formed in Birmingham in 2001 have developed an interest in translating and reinterpreting encounters with technological visions of the future. Employing a casual, gratifying retro-futurism TOP500, is a set of watercolours representing the 10 fastest supercomputers in the world today. To produce the paintings, one of the pair described the supercomputer in detail and the other painted a depiction of it without any previous visual reference.

In a similar techno-mediation, but this time relying on the mechanical hand, the show continued with a series of abstract landscape paintings. Made in nature, the pictures were produced by a robotic arm that applied paint to canvas via the controls of a human master. The paintings are display attached to the end of the robotic arms that created them, as if asking for appraisal in an infantile manor. The series continues the artist’s interest in creating a junction where traditional craft and nature encounter new technology and digital production.

Data Haven, a sculpture that sits at the centre of the exhibition, is a suspension of flickering green and black pixels, wires, keyboards and strapped video cassette tapes. The sculpture’s title refers to a physical and virtual refuge for unregulated data that can be stored securely, a function central to operations such as wikileaks.

Juneau Projects’ accompanied the opening of the show with a performance of their live act, Juneau Brothers, with collaborator Joe Welden. Employing a boyish computer game charm, they utilize homemade DIY guitars and drum machines, built with axe handles and games controllers to create noisy and frenetic sounds and vocals and continuing their nostalgic yearning for a future that has never been realised.

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