Daniel R. Small

Chapter 7: Pending Cipher for the Open Present

Las Cruces, NM

January 26 - mid February 2015

 

Back to The Manifest Destiny Billboard Project

 

Daniel R. Small’s billboards throughout the Las Cruces, NM area for The Manifest Destiny Billboard Project, entitled Pending Cipher for the Open Present, were constructed by culling materials from two faux-historical sites: the Los Lunas Decalogue Stone near Los Lunas, NM, and Cecil B. DeMille’s film set for The Ten Commandments in Guadalupe, CA. The ten billboards depicted text from the Decalogue Stone, believed by many as an attempt at writing the Ten Commandments, in a language derived from Cypriot Greek and ancient Hebrew. Small added modern day proofreading marks to this pseudo-language, creating illusory hieroglyphs superimposed on images taken by the artist in Guadalupe, CA where DeMille demolished and buried the ersatz Egyptian city set used in The Ten Commandments film from 1923.

The works illustrated the complicated and layered notions of history, with a modern day source appearing authentic yet in actuality far removed of its original intent. The text connoted the ancient past and distant future, by both literally and figuratively excavating and conflating false narratives. The billboards simultaneously depicted the genuine ambitions of cultural development as well as these disillusioned results.

BILLBOARD TEXT TRANSLATIONS
PHRASES FROM THE LAS LUNAS DECALOGUE STONE

(please note third listed down as #8 appears out of order due billboard location availability)

1. OUT OF THE LAND “YOUR GOD” HAS TAKEN YOU
YOU MUST DESIRE NOT

2. REMEMBER, TO KEEP HOLY
REMEMBER, “YOUR GOD”
REMEMBER, NOT

**8. YOUR GOD, HAS TAKEN YOU IN VAIN
^NOT OUT OF THE LAND
REMEMBER?

3. TO KEEP HOLY
“YOUR GOD”, IN VAIN YOU MUST DESIRE
IDOL

4. YOUR DAY, WILL BE LONG, REMEMBER.          YOUR GOD
YOU MUST DESIRE “YOUR GOD” FALSE WITNESS^

5. REMEMBER, NOT
YOUR GOD, YOUR IDOL, AND ALL
FALSE WITNESSES

6. TO KEEP HOLY, AND ALL, YOU MUST DESIRE
YOUR GOD REMEMBERS.

7. OUT OF THE LAND, HAS TAKEN YOU, YOUR GOD?
REMEMBER IN VAIN
TO KEEP HOLY IDOL

9. AND ALL, FALSE WITNESSES                           
AND ALL, REMEMBER NOT?
AND ALL YOUR DAYS, “WILL BE LONG”

10. YOUR GOD, IDOL, FALSE WITNESS
REMEMBER IN VAIN
REMEMBER? THE LAND TO KEEP HOLY


MAP:

 


OPENING WEEKEND

Please join us in celebrating the launch of Chapter #6: Jeremy Shaw and
Chapter #7: Daniel R. Small with a panel discussion, reception, and historical site visit

Friday, January 23, 2015

Panel with Jeremy Shaw, Daniel R. Small, and Shamim M. Momin
6:00pm
Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts
The University of Texas at El Paso
500 West University Avenue
El Paso, TX 79968
Rubin Center is located at Dawson Road at Sun Bowl Drive, at the south end of the Sun Bowl Stadium

Reception at Rosa’s Cantina
7:30pm-9:30pm
3454 Doniphan Drive
El Paso, TX 79922

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Billboard-sighting trip to Las Cruces, NM for Daniel R. Small’s billboards
Departing from Rosa’s Cantina at 11am

Lunch at the Double Eagle in Historic Old Mesilla
12:30pm
2355 Calle De Guadalupe
Mesilla, NM 88046

Visit to White Sands National Park for the “Sunset Stroll”
4:30pm
Meet the ranger 5 miles inside the park next to the “Sunset Stroll” sign
19955 U.S. 70
Alamogordo, NM 88310

SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES AND PLACES OF INTEREST:

 

This project was made possible with an award from the National Endowment for the Arts: Art Works and with support from Clear Channel Outdoor El Paso and Lamar Advertising Company New Mexico-El Paso. Special thanks to the Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts at The University of Texas at El Paso.

 

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