Cryptology

Rule of Three

 
 

Ghostradio

by Markus Decker, Pamela Neuwirth & Franz Xaver
Interactive art, sculpture

View an image of the artwork

Inside a metallic dodecahedron sits a curious instrument, its purpose elusive. The seemingly simple device, constructed from tin cans and acrylic glass, generates streams of random numbers to be used for data security. As corporations and governments capture information to boost cash or defence, Ghostradio offers a physical face to cyber complexities. Within a world buzzing with algorithms, its tangibility is comparatively consoling. It offers us the opportunity to control the data that we create, to avoid state surveillance, and to ask why we would rather trust this otherworldly contraption than the powers that be.

Words by Katherine Fieldgate


Zodiac

directed by David Fincher
Feature film

View a still from the film

Two detectives and a political cartoonist travel around a dark, drizzly San Francisco on a quest to catch a serial killer, solving the coded clues that he sends their way. The cynical characters and shadowy shots evoke film noir, while the action is based on true events. The dominant colour is a murky brown, imbuing the visual style with the same grittiness that underpins the script. The first murder comes in an early scene, depicted with remove. A young couple are shot while parked in their car, the woman’s body crashing into the door in slow motion as the bullets strike her, blood spraying over her doll-like features.

Words by Sophia Martin-Pavlou


Fez

developed by Polytron Corporation
Video game

View a still from the game

Today seems like any other day. We leave the house to greet neighbours, admire each other’s flatness, and share relief that cubes do not exist. But a village elder has a message for us. The universe is destabilising, and we must be the one to restore order. A bright red fez is placed on our bald white head, only for the game to glitch and reboot. When we wake again, we are able to switch planes, to enter the third dimension. As the world rotates around us, shifts of perspective cast light upon our surrounds. We stumble upon others, who speak in seemingly garbled glyphs, in the unfamiliar symbols that we see on neon signs and classroom walls.

Words by John Wadsworth


More to discover

Ghostradio: You can find out more about the artwork here, and read an interview with the artists by Régine Debatty for We Make Money Not Art.

Zodiac: You can watch the trailer here, and watch a video essay about the film by Josh Forrest here. Mike Miley has written an essay on procedure as art for Bright Lights Film Journal, and Elbert Ventura has written about political critique in Zodiac for Slate.

Fez: You can watch the launch trailer here, and the official trailer here. Articles about Fez include Nick Dinicola's post on the artistry of play for PopMatter, and Devin Raposo's article on the mystery of Fez's black monolith puzzle for Kill Screen.

Zach Budgor has interviewed Disasterpiece, composer of Fez's music, for Kill Screen. John Wadsworth, Silent Frame's Editor-in-Chief, has written about the music in Fez (and the remake of Doom) in a short essay for The Oxford Culture Review.


Today's connection

All three artworks involve encryption or solving codes.


Question of the Day

Which artworks associated with the word 'Cryptology' would you recommend?
Let us know on Facebook, Patreon, or Twitter.

'Solar Passage', a composition by David S. Ware from the album Cryptology(→)

– John Wadsworth, Silent Frame's Editor-in-Chief (via Patreon →)


Also on Silent Frame