Exhibitions

Knut Hybinette & Troy Richards (2008)

Artists

Knut Hybinette & Troy Richards

Centerstage Must-See Art Exhibits by Justin Sondak

Society is broken, violent anarchy persists and meth addicts swarm suburban yards in Hybinette and Richards’ dystopian vision of Ripon, Wisconsin in the near-future. The town founded as a utopian burg along Charles Fourier’s socialist philosophy and put on the map a decade later as the Republican Party’s birthplace has, in this imagined trajectory, run out of ideas and succumbed to violent crime and despair. The duo of Cleveland Institute of Art professors know how to push our buttons. Their dense, cacophonous world appropriates gaming, graphic novels and the media noise machine. The Ripon Video game, housed in the Ripon Shanty, turns interactive competition on its head. Players roam the marshland, seeking impossible, adrenalinized redemption but are ultimately slain by camouflaged assassins. There’s no hope for Ripon outside the shanty, where disaster scenes and a corroded billboard mock Fourier’s vision.

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