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From E-Waste to Art: New BRIC Exhibit Invites Visitors to 'Upcycle' Electronic Devices

Part exhibit, part residence, Brooklyn artist Penelope Umbrico demystifies technology and explores its rapid obsolescence. 
Penelope Umbrico, BK Reader
Photo credit: Jason Wyche/ BRIC

The Gallery at BRIC House is presenting a new, interactive exhibition, Penelope Umbrico: MONUMENT, which explores the state of our current technologies and their rapid obsolescence. 

The centerpiece of the exhibit is a 20-foot-long installation of broken LCD TVs, presenting the idea that all technologies are in effect mysterious "black boxes" to most users. By revealing the hidden aspects of these black boxes, Umbrico attempts to speak to our ever-accumulating e-waste and the rapid pace at which digital hardware becomes obsolete.

Umbrico is a Brooklyn-based mix-media artist who utilizes search engines, web platforms, common software applications and imaging technologies to create multi-disciplinary works. Her work navigates between producer and consumer, local and global, the individual and the collective with attention to the technologies.

Throughout the exhibition, Umbrico and other artists will hold residence hours, inviting visitors to bring their own broken or unused devices to disassemble and transform them into new, "upcycled objects." These new art pieces will be displayed in the gallery. A photo of the upcycled object will be printed on site, and the contributor will be able to take away a print as a "souvenir" of the exhibition.

Space is set aside in the gallery for the community to recycle their unwanted e-waste.

Penelope Umbrico's MONUMENT is on view through January 20 at the Gallery at BRIC House and is open Tuesday - Saturday, 10:00am - 6:00pm; and Sunday, 12:00pm -6:00pm. Admission is free.