Shine on you Crazy Diamond

Project Row Houses, Houston, 2024
Group Exhibition

This installation was part of Round 56: Post Hip Hop? Or Return of the Boom Bap! curated by William Córdova.

Shine on You Crazy Diamond is a cacophony of images and shadows, an immersive experience exploring the intersection between sound and vision, and the spectrum of sensory input. Vu reflects upon the theme of psychadelia and the 1960’s subculture that emerged from a melting pot of innovation in science, music and popular culture.

Throughout Rowhouse 2509, optical illusions, phosphorescence, and stroboscopic devices are incorporated, dispersing light, image, and text across the mirrored surface. The swirling dream machine at the center of the installation acts as a mandala of shadows, pulsating and stimulating the brain’s electrical oscillations as viewers are invited to investigate Vu’s hallucinogenic cosmos. The glowing, frenetic print of the Unabomber manifesto and Vu's book speaks to the political implications of this era, referencing Ted Kaczynski's early years as a teenager at Harvard.

A test-subject in Project MK-Ultra, Kaczynski was subjected to these CIA experiments known for using LSD and other mind-control techniques — transforming the boy genius into the future terrorist Unabomber.