I first learned of BNPJ.exe on Today and Tomorrow, it is a downloadable virtual exhibit by Jon Rafman and Tabor Robak for the Extra Extra Gallery in Philadelphia.

Yes, I realize the graphic interface looks a bit…dated.

But hear me out.

BNPJ.exe was actually released on the same day as Google launched their Art Project, and I think the software is yet another interesting concept/utilization of technology to look at new ways of observing and interacting with art in our environment.

(Blue Venus, Yves Klein)

The “game” starts off in an Yves Klein area after you injest Rhodopas M60A(the synthetic fixatives that make up the pigment, IKB), and are left to fumble your way to from room to room by exploring and interacting with objects.  Each room is textured with classic works, from Pollock to Miro.

I was unable to find an artist statement of the exhibit as to their reasoning behind the software, but I did end up reading that the ending is supposed to be a commentary on our own mortality. Cut to me frantically mashing down all the buttons down on my keyboard in hopes of finding an exit.  Oh, well.

Again, I don’t think this exhibit is particularly astounding from a graphics standpoint, but it had me thinking about the potential of this kind of virtual art world.  Aside from browsing already established museums and galleries, you can create more of these conceptual type “games” that are not necessarily grounded in reality.

Off the top of my head, I immediately thought of the Hotel Fox in Copenhagen, whose 61 rooms were each designed by 21 artists. So, what if you took the same concept as BNPJ.exe, in maneuvering from room to room, but have established and emerging artists working with graphic designers to take their work and give each of these environments their own flavor.

A frantic Murakami room full of chaos and color, leading to a soothing Audrey Kawasaki room, and possibly some lesser known artists in between, like the opening band for a show.

Sure, you came to see The Killers, but in the mean time you have to sit through Macy Gray. (Not that lesser known visual artists are agonizing like Macy, but I think you know where I’m going with this thought process)

Considering the Google Art Project is less than a month old, it will be interesting to see what form future online exhibitions take and new areas they will explore/boundaries they will push.  I remain open minded.

But, not everyone is quite the.. visionary that I am:


Dan: Welcome to 1997, i hate dumb ‘art’ projects

Me: Dont.

Dan: Did.

Me: I like Myst throw-backs

Dan: Of course you do, you lost your virginity to Castle Wolfenstein

Download BNPJ.EXE here(for PC + Mac)

Great write-up of the exhibition here. ♥

This entry was posted in Web Finds and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *