Art Gene, Bath Street, Barrow-in-Furness,
Cumbria, LA14 5TY England, UK
Wails from the Crypto is a ten-minute audio work by artist Simon the Last that acts as a digital tribute to those who lost big in last summer’s crypto crash.
During that time, the ‘ScreamDAO’ message board appeared on the messaging app Telegram, encouraging people who had lost large sums of money on their crypto investments to vent their frustration by posting audio of them screaming, crying, and howling. The result was an outpouring of misery as hundreds of people posted themselves screaming into the void or gently sobbing into their phones.
Today, news from the world of crypto, NFTs, and propositions of other blockchain-based projects that characterise Web3, have all but disappeared from the media. Where there was once a massive cohort of celebrities and wealthy elites queueing up to make as much noise as possible about their new ‘coin’, or promote their NFT series to pump up the value of their own investments, there is now a haunting silence.
Through considering our relationship to legacy in online spaces, Simon commemorates the thousands of ordinary people that faced financial ruin in what turned out to be a scam that only benefitted a few at the top.
‘Scream DAO’ message board, Telegram
Created solely from audio posted to the ‘ScreamDAO’ message board, Wails from the Crypto forms a collective expression of grief from the amateur investors who were devastated by their life-changing losses.
While the loopable ambient track was intended to be played in a physical space, being online for On Repeat puts it back into the digital alongside the community that created the original audio. Here, it created a sort of digital tribute to the victims of the crash – a place for the ghosts of a largely forgotten tragedy to haunt their audience.
We shared elements from this exhibition, and the rest of our programme across our digital platforms. To get a sense of the live programme check out our highlights on Instagram.
Note: Wails from the Crypto plays automatically when you enter this page on some browsers. To play manually, press play on soundcloud below. Adjust the volume, with the controls on your device.
Simon the Last is an artist and designer from south London. His art practice evolved from a decade-long practice as an established theatre director and filmmaker and often takes the form of an installation or immersive experience.
His work explores the idea of legacy; how it defines the material world, shapes the stories that we tell ourselves, and its intersection with the queer experience.
His practice also explores human-centred futurisms and technologies as a reaction against those proposed by capital forces, often focussing around the contemporary political moment and issues of social justice and class consciousness.
His recent works have been exhibited in a combination of group and solo shows around London, including the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition, the Deptford X Festival fringe and the Queer Artists Now exhibition as part of FRINGE! Queer Film Festival.
Cumbria, LA14 5TY England, UK
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