In a Nutshell

Through handmade and custom-fabricated hardware, software, and enclosures, the electronic sculptures of Chris Combs respond to themes of surveillance, control, and algorithmic bias—and the viewer, using facial recognition and motion sensing. He works with a wide range of practices to create circuit boards, software, and enclosures for his sculptures, which both embrace and question technology.

Chris Combs is an artist based in Washington, D.C and Mount Rainier, Maryland who creates provocative technology. His show Industry Standards (McLean Project for the Arts, 2023) featured eighteen works made from reclaimed and surplus industrial components, reflecting on themes of disruptive technologies, surveillance, and environmental destruction. Lossiness (VisArts, 2021) included seven artworks exploring the boundaries of human perception. The Algorithm Will See You Now (Transformer, 2022) addressed algorithmic bias and failings of “AI” products. Judging Me Judging You (DCAC, 2018) dealt with surveillance and control, and the 35 machines in Maelstrom (Rhizome DC, 2021) spread rumors about their visitors. Madness Method, a public art collaboration with David Greenfieldboyce, was part of 2021’s Georgetown GLOW.

Chris is a two-time recipient of the DC CAH Arts and Humanities Fellowship program and was shortlisted for the 2021 Aesthetica Art Prize. He is a graduate of the Corcoran College of Art + Design and was a photo editor for National Geographic. He joined the Otis Street Arts Project in May, 2021.


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Exhibitions (Solo)

  • Lossiness. VisArts, Rockville MD. Sep-Oct 2021

  • Maelstrom. Rhizome DC, Washington, D.C. Jan-Feb 2021

  • Judging Me Judging You. DC Arts Center, Washington, D.C. April–August 2018

Exhibitions (Group)

  • Finding Home. Works: Gateway, Our Time II. Harmony Hall. Ft. Washington, Md. Nov ‘21-Jan ‘22

  • Fall Salon. Works: ZIP/ZCTA, 16 Bits Micro. Target Gallery, Alexandria. Nov-Dec 2021

  • Multiples. Work: Sync/Desync Micro, R/G/B Micro. but, also. Washington, D.C. Nov-Dec 2021

  • DC Art Now: Art Bank Finalists. Work: Rxsqtta-Stzne. DC CAH HQ. Oct-Dec 2021.

  • Take a Number. Work: DataWorld 2021: booth #313. Arlington Arts Center, Va. Sep-Dec 2021

  • Touch. Work: Campfire. Mansion at Strathmore, Md. Sep-Oct 2021

  • Wallmountables 2021. Work: 16 Bits I, Sync/Desync I. DC Arts Center. July-Aug 2021

  • Sugar Rush. Work: 8 and 16 Bits Micro, Impressions. Bad Candy, Washington, D.C. July 2021

  • Aesthetica Prize Shortlist 2021. Work: Morale is Mandatory. York Art Gallery, U.K. May-Sep 2021

  • SHINE. Work: Publish/Perish, Impressions. Annmarie Sculpture Garden, Md. June-Aug 2021

  • Controlled Burn: A Fire Sale. Four works. but, also. Washington, D.C. May-June 2021

  • 100 Years in the Present. Work: Rxsqtta-Stzne. Glen Echo Park, MD. May 2021

  • Georgetown GLOW. Work: MADNESS METHOD (with David Greenfieldboyce). April-June 2021

  • Juried Exhibition 2021. Work: Impressions. Tamar Hendel Gallery, Silver Spring. Mar-Apr 2021

  • Acts of Resistance Through Absurd Resilience. Work: 16 Bits, 8 Bits. Rhizome DC. Mar 2021

  • Movement, Moments. Work: Side Guide Control. Target Gallery, Alexandria. Jan-Mar 2021

  • Spotlight. Work: Gateway (Transmission III). Touchstone Gallery, D.C. Dec 2020-Feb 2021

  • DEEP FAKE. Work: Morale is Mandatory, Naked Mueller. SUPERCOLLIDER, L.A. Nov 2020-Jan 2021

  • Global Conversation 2020. Google Arts & Culture, United Nations. Online. Work: Point of Sale

  • Wallmountables 2020. DC Arts Center, Washington, D.C. Aug-Oct 2020

  • Artist’s Choice Juried. Work: Rxsqtta-Stzne. Online. Foundry Gallery, Washington, D.C. Aug 2020

  • WPA Auction, “High Frequency.” Work: Road Ahead. Online. Washington Project for the Arts, Washington, D.C. July-Aug 2020

  • Quarantine Dreams. Work: Loopback (Transmission I). Online. Gallery-V, Lex. Park, Md. Aug 2020

  • By The People x Monochrome Collective Art Fair. Work: Impressions, Point of Sale, Hand-Washing Timers. Online. Upcoming: June-July 2020

  • Moving Forward. Work: Loopback (Transmission I). Online. Glen Echo Park, MD. June-Aug 2020

  • Art + Technology 4.0. Work: Publish/Perish, Bureautron. TEJAS Gallery, Dayton, OH. March 2020

  • Enter: Future. Work: Rxsqtta-Stzne. Gallery 102, Washington, D.C. Nov 2019-Jan 2020

  • Everyday Objects. Work: Publish/Perish. Studio Montclair, Montclair, N.J. Nov-Dec 2019

  • When Darkness Falls. Annmarie Sculpture Garden, Solomons, Md. Oct 2018-Jan 2019

  • Unfinished Business. VAE Raleigh, Raleigh, N.C. Sept-Dec 2019

  • Wallmountables 2019. DC Arts Center, Washington, D.C. July 2019

  • Wallmountables 2018. DC Arts Center, Washington, D.C. June 2018

  • Wallmountables 2017. DC Arts Center, Washington, D.C. July 2017

  • Photojournalism Thesis Exhibitions. Corcoran Gallery of Art. Washington, D.C. February 2006

Exhibitions (Events)

  • Sound Scene XIII, a two-day event. Work: Closely Held. Online. June 2020

  • DCAC 30th Anniversary Party. Work: Rxsqtta-Stzne. Cheshire D.C., Washington, D.C. Oct 2019

  • Mount Pleasant Lantern Walk, a one-night pop-up event. Work: Fireflies (with Rachel Kaufman). November 2018

  • Sound Scene XI, a two-day event. Work: The Heart Says. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Gallery, Washington, D.C. July 2018

  • Buffer Overflow. Solo pop-up show. Fab Lab D.C., Washington, D.C. April 7-25 2018

  • Sound Scene X, a one-day event. Work: Markov Radio. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Gallery, Washington, D.C. July 2017