The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'rats'
Scientists have found a rat-eating plant in far north Queensland. Perhaps they could start exporting them to London (where, folklore has it, one is never more than either six or 20 feet away from a rat, depending on whom you ask)?
Yesterday, Your Humble Narrator went to Banksy's latest exhibition, titled "Crude Oils". It was held in Westbourne Grove, Notting Hill, in a shop which had been transformed into a ruined art gallery for the duration of the exhibition. By this, I mean that it had been filled with props such as smashed artefacts and a skeleton in a security guard's uniform, and then populated with dozens of live rats, which were kept provided with pellets and water in shattered vases and such. Because of the rats (which, apparently, were borrowed from a film animal company and had probably appeared in any films, TV shows and commercials made in London recently and containing rats), the main part of the gallery was behind a plexiglass screen and one had to sign a disclaimer, promising not to bother the rats. Time inside the main part of the gallery was limited to five minutes per person.
The exhibition itself was quite entertaining, in characteristic Banksy fashion, consisting of various artworks "remixed" and updated for the grim meathook present, as seen through Banksy's cynical, kitchen-sink sensibility. There were romantic landscape paintings updated with police incident boards, CCTV cameras, submarines, vandalism and violence. A classical nude statue was covered in tattoos, and a bust wore a gimp mask. All the usual sort of thing, and enough to not disappoint any Banksy fan. Though the rats were the stars of the show, and their presence (which one could see, if not smell, all around) made the most striking impression.
The exhibition is open for two more days, 11am to 8pm. Meanwhile, my photos thereof are here.
Rats have been trained to tell the difference between spoken Japanese and Dutch. (via bOING bOING, who immediately saw the biowar potential of such developments)
A scientist at The University of Florida has grown a brain in a vat, which can fly a simulated F22 fighter. The "brain", made of rat neurons, controls the simulated combat hardware through an interface to a PC. And so, real life imitates Banksy stencils. (via bOING bOING)