Courtesy of TRANSFER

Exhibitions

Step inside the world of Zardulu the Mythmaker

The artist trickster behind some of the internet’s most bizarre hoaxes has published a cryptic book for her first solo show

Did that raccoon really ride an alligator in Florida? And what was that crazy sea creature that washed up on a beach in Georgia? Tonight those and other strange incidents—many of which reached viral status online—will be unveiled as the work of the enigmatic artist trickster Zardulu The Mythmaker. Zardulu first gained widespread recognition in 2015 when she staged a video of a rat using a sleeping New York City subway rider’s cellphone to capture a selfie. Since then, she has been secretly engineering incredible hoaxes that serve to inject ancient mystery and fantasy into everyday life. In her first solo gallery show, these scenarios will be presented as works of art, complete with mythologically inspired titles like Ketos Troias, Shores of the Acheron, and The Watchmen of Lo.

“The wondrous happenings of the world were once considered omens: symbolic messages from the Gods that required our imaginative interpretation,” the artist once told us. “While we continue to experience them today, they've been stripped of their significance and are spoken of in purely rational terms. To most, they are the subject of viral photographs, videos and stories. To me, they are much more, as I continue the divinatory traditions of our ancestors, gathering information from them, viewing the world through their lens and following their guidance.”

Along with documentation of Zardulu’s finished works, the show Triconis Aeternis: Rites and Mysteries (4 October-1 November), organised by the experimental space Transfer, includes paintings, sketches and encoded writings by the artist, which are for sale through the gallery. A limited edition artist book has also been published for the show, with pages of undeciphered text and images. We were given a sneak peak of the tome, but beyond titles of the works—and in her usual cryptic fashion—Zardulu says she “will leave any further interpretation to the viewer”.

• Triconis Aeternis: Rites and Mysteries (4 October-1 November), Transfer, #ONCANAL Presented by Wallplay, 321 Canal Street, New York

Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, open to the painting Dumuzid in Bad-Tibira by Zardulu The Mythmaker
Courtesy of TRANSFER

Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, open to the painting Dumuzid in Bad-Tibira by Zardulu The Mythmaker

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, book spread with tarot paintings and cipher text
Courtesy of TRANSFER

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, book spread with tarot paintings and cipher text

Zardulu The Mythmaker, The Wrath of Ezra, book spread with cipher text
Courtesy of TRANSFER

Zardulu The Mythmaker, The Wrath of Ezra, book spread with cipher text

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, book spread with tarot paintings and cipher text
Courtesy of TRANSFER

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Triconis Aternis: Rites and Mysteries, book spread with tarot paintings and cipher text

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Ninsar, Ninkurra, Uttu, Ninti, also a unique guache painting on black paper
Courtesy of TRANSFER

Zardulu The Mythmaker, Ninsar, Ninkurra, Uttu, Ninti, also a unique guache painting on black paper