Gold Ring by Jen Liu for Pink Slime Caesar Shift: Electropore (2021)


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 Anguished by my fellow countrymen who are drunk in fatuous dreams,

Lamenting my broken homeland with no one yet to keep its spirits.

At the end of the day and at the end of the way, tears of despair are in vain;

Mutilated mountains and leftover waters, who can summon back the ghosts of their integrity?

No need for a lone grave of a meter size, since China no longer has clean soil;

With a cup of wine, let us sing the songs of her spirit beyond the times.

- Qiu Jin, in a letter to her friend Xü Xiaoshu, on the eve of her execution in 1907

Inside this wearable sculpture is a string of synthetic DNA written by the artist: code for a green fluorescent protein expression, followed by encrypted text containing both a poem by Qiu Jin, as well as contemporary law on the legal rights of industrially poisoned factory workers in China. Inside the ring, this DNA is safe for future use: in the near future or a century from now.  According to the premise of Pink Slime Caesar Shift, messages crucial for labor rights organizing in China could be distributed through synthetic DNA introduced into industrial in-vitro beef, whose workflow enables easy genetic "tampering".  Necessary information about labor rights would be spread through the food distribution network instead of the social media and mobile phone network.   Workers can find these food-borne secret messages by shining a cheap blacklight on a food sample, while otherwise checking for pathogens: it will make any living cell glow ghostly green.  It is important not to underestimate the ability of workers to empower themselves, give more tools.  

Gold Ring:

-Ed. of 6

-Size info: 1 @ ring size 3, 1 @ ring size 6, intended as "upper knuckle" rings, not "lower knuckle" wear of your typical ring

-Other specs (material, other relevant info): Cast by hand, based on two 3D scanned hand-sculpted pieces (ring and containment bead). Solid polished brass, containment bead laser-soldered to ring, on top of an internal chamber containing quartz crystals coated in synthetically-produced DNA by the artist.  


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