Art and Archives

Memeology, 2018, Silkscreen, 12” x 18”

This screenprint presents two out of a series of seven photocopied government documents that can be found inside a manilla folder labelled, The Department of Memeology. These documents describe the dangers of a popular internet meme. Lanzillo created these documents to satirize senate hearing archives from the Huston Plan in 1975. The Huston Plan documents detail FBI reports regarding the dangers of black student groups on college campuses in the 1970s. The format and much of the rhetoric was adopted from these reports to create the Department of Memeology documents. This series utilizes particular presentation styles to create the illusion of authority and call into question the reliability and trustworthiness of such reports. The investigation of “memeology” calls us to think critically about surveillance and when it should be considered unfounded or even preposterous.

When presented in a gallery setting all 7 documents are placed inside a manila folder labeled, The Department of Mememology. A stack of these identical folders would be placed in the space for visitors to take with them.

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