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Whithervanes: The Art of Anxiety

September 17th, 2018

In 2018, Locust Projects invited the Detroit-based design duo known as root of two to bring three headless chickens to roost in Miami. For six months, Cezanne Charles and John Marshall embellish the Magic City skyline with their public art and digital engagement project.

Previously presented in France and the United Kingdom, Whithervanes translate the traditional weathervane into a 21st century radio transmitter. Mounted on rooftops in downtown, the Design District and Biscayne Boulevard, the four-foot tall birds change colors and direction in response to the climate of fear propagated by the media. These are tech-savvy chickens. They scan the Internet for alarmist keywords, collecting information on topics from violence to economic crises to natural disasters. You can follow their “neurotic, early worrying system”, or N.E.W.S. on the Whithervanes Twitter account.

Connecting art with streaming social media and news technology, Whithervane designers Cezanne Charles and John Marshall invite us to think about the emotional impact of the digital information that controls our view of the world.

Sound Editor: Anamnesis Audio | Photographs courtesy root of two and Locust Projects

Related episodes: Art of the EverydayArt and the Rising SeaReport from Miami Art Week 2017