At once unsettling and entrancing, the artist known as 0010×0010’s work seeks to simulate otherwise incommunicable experiences of psychological distress. In a recent exhibition entitled “MØDVLXXR” at the MOCA Bangkok, three-channel video projections of the artist’s hypnotizing films resemble renaissance polyptychs of scenes of sickness and decay. It seems that despite the obvious technological virtuosity with which this digitally native artist’s works appear, suppurating at the core of his practice is his fixation with existential questions about the darkness of the human mind, something that has plagued artists since the birth of civilization. While radically different in terms of material, 0010×0010 plumbs the same agonized territory as artists like Vincent van Gogh, who probably not so coincidentally hails from the same region in the Netherlands where 0010×0010 himself grew up. 0010×0010 tells me he recognizes in the modern master’s paintings the use of art to give the place, Helmond, which quite literally translates to “hell’s mouth,” “beauty, at least to survive.”
A similar motivation seems to drive 0010×0010 except his landscape isn’t so much physical as it is mental. Aesthetically overwhelming installations and artworks allow 0010×0010 to externalize and countenance feelings of depression, mania, and loneliness. Trauma and mental illness are both the root and inspiration for his work and also its subjects. Paradoxically, even as his work enters the world under a pseudonym, it is deeply intertwined with his life story and personal experience. For example, the name he has chosen is the binary code for the date of his birthday: 2/2. It’s another probably not so coincidental fact that highlights his fixation with duality, which runs throughout everything he does. But the idea of a split self doesn’t just resonate for the artist numerologically; he was born to a Melanesian father and a European mother and says this gave him the distinct feeling of not belonging entirely anywhere while growing up.
Indeed, 0010×0010 is just one of many monikers that he has released work under, and in just one of the fields he creates in. In addition to his work as an artist, he is an accomplished actor, a prolific musician, and was the visual supervisor on a documentary about the great Andrei Tarkovsky. While neither his life or work straightforwardly endorse or indict the fracturing of identity that the digital age has ushered in, 0010×0010 has certainly pursued many possibilities. He just sold his first NFT Glitch Bunny at SuperRare for 11 ETH, a price that placed the artist’s work as the third highest sale on the platform this week. Right now, a powerful virtual exhibition of his work can be viewed through his gallery Xumiiro, a pioneering new space run by Nalada Taechanarong that’s looking to change the way we see digital art, and to blend the real and online worlds.
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