the Erosion of Silicon Beach by Nina Sarnelle
was exhibited on the INTERNET ART BOOK FAIR from October 15 — 31, 2019
Co-presented with the Living Room Light Exchange for their printed publication,
LRLX Pub 4, Spellwork: Technologies and Conjurings.
Santa Monica, California has been nicknamed "Silicon Beach" in recent years for its rapid influx of tech companies. In this video, sunbathers and sand-castlers smash silicon wafers near the iconic Santa Monica Pier, returning them to sand. These glittering disks embody the material core of today's ubiquitous technologies — computers, phones, cameras — anything with a microchip depends upon silicon as its essential semi-conductor. This project re-imagines the very real problem of beach erosion in Southern California (exacerbated by human-caused climate change) with an even further anthropocentric twist, staging a participatory shattering of techno-optimism that is both quotidian and sublime.
The video was accompanied by an edition of 150 bookmarks commissioned by the Living Room Light Exchange
for their printed publication, LRLX Pub 4, Spellwork: Technologies and Conjurings
. Each bookmark consists of a glass souvenir bottle on a silver chain, filled with a mixture of beach sand and hand-crushed silicon crystal.