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An exhibition of brand new print-based immersive installation work by Chris Fritton

Exhibition Reception: Friday, August 2nd,, 2024, 6:00-9:00pm

Artist Talk: TBA

Gallery Hours: by appointment, email us at

Follow Me Into The Harness of the World is a single letterpress poem that’s been constructed, deconstructed, and reconstructed through a series of origami-like folds. The resultant series of prints reveal a message on the verge of breaking down and becoming something new as each crease erodes, reshapes, and eradicates letterforms, leaving behind the detritus of language and the residue of meaning. It’s the architecture of language built and unbuilt, then abandoned to translation. 


This immersive installation contains dozens of brand-new large-scale works that Fritton made during a two-week residency at the Institute for Electronic Arts at Alfred University. It also consists of a series of stop-motion animations of the text as it progressed through different phases, as well as audio recordings of the fractured verse. The materials are presented in an artificial atmosphere that reflects the power of chance operations and the corrosive nature of interpretation.


A statement from the show reads: “All information is merely contrast: light and dark, signal and noise, loud and quiet, near and far, yes and no, ones and zeros. That is the harness of the world, the ineffable truth: every discernible thing consists of the counterposition of opposites. A finite system of two principles that is infinitely recombinable constitutes the grammar of our world. Choices about those recombinations lead us from the bound to the boundless; this is where communication occurs. The choices are folds, and meaning is born of the crease. The choices are the warp and weft, but the meaning is in the weaving.” 


The project was inspired by the little-known but astonishing hieroglyph clam (Lioconcha hieroglyphica), whose shell forms markings that look like ancient runes or some indecipherable alien language, when in fact they’re the result of the random interaction of cells following a series of rules similar to a “cellular automaton,” a mathematical phenomenon first posited by John von Neumann in the 1940s. Fritton notes: “In Harness, the cells are the letterforms and the folds are the rules.”


Chris Fritton is a poet, printer, and fine artist based in Buffalo, NY. He’s the former Studio Director of the Western New York Book Arts Center, and he’s best known for his decade-long traveling project and subsequent book, The Itinerant Printer. His work deals with what he likes to describe as the “romance of science and the science of romance,” and often involves teasing out academic principles into elaborate, impractical stories that confront the absurdity of reality and the language we use to describe it. 


Chris Fritton
The Itinerant Printer
threads: @itinerantprinter

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