Hacker artist takes over internet cafe for speed show

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Computer terminals at a gritty internet cafe in New York City's Chinatown were taken over last week by digital artist Evan Roth in order to debut his internet-based art.

Scores of art enthusiasts flocked to Mr Roth's "speed show", an art exhibition format that is specifically geared toward displaying artwork hosted on websites.

To hold a speed show, an artist will rent time on terminals at an internet cafe, many times amidst a sea of teenage gamers, and pull up webpages containing his or her artwork on a cluster of monitors.

Mr Roth spread the word about his speed show, called When We were Kings, through Twitter only days before the event.

"The word speed is intentional," says Mr Roth, who debuted works of art the following day at Museum of Modern Art in New York.

"Part of the idea of this is an exhibitioning style that is more suited to the internet - a very quick and rapid pace publication," Mr Roth says.

"The setup for a speed show is supposed to be super easy. You get there an hour before the opening, just got into the preferences and set the home button to whatever the piece is that you're putting on," he adds.

The idea of hosting these flash exhibitions, which typically only last one evening, was conceived by artist Aram Bartholl in 2010.

"It's sort of a hack in the sense that you reclaim the space and use it for a different purpose," Mr Bartholl says.

Produced by the BBC's Matt Danzico

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