Internet Imperialist Gretchen Andrew

Gretchen Andrew is a Search Engine Artist and Internet Imperialist who programs her vision boards to manipulate the internet with art & desire. Her vision boards are reflections of both who she is and who she wants to be. As such, Gretchen wanted to answer most of this questionnaire using close-ups from some of my latest vision boards.  

Name : Gretchen Andrew @gretchenandrew

Birthplace : I was born in Los Angeles, California but I grew up in New Hampshire. Which is pretty different. But my whole life people thought I was like from LA.  Especially when I was living in London and Tokyo. I moved back here a couple of years ago and am happy to be back in line with cliches and expectations. Los Angeles is the perfect home for my work because it’s a place people love to try to dismiss as trivial but is, without doubt, the center of culture, especially for studio art and food. 

Métier : Search Engine Artist / Internet Imperialist, that is to say, I invented a job, and here’s the description:

As a Search Engine Artist, I co-author artworks with a search engine. As an Internet Imperialist, I manipulate the global internet to my own specifications, though I choose to do this in a way that is obvious to humans but of which the machines are oblivious. 

Sources of inspiration: Love

Sources of motivation:  Happiness. Or the pursuit of. 

What makes you happy : Pretty much everything you see in my vision boards is there because it makes me happy. I am constantly inventing the future I want and that includes a lot of flowers and champagne. 

Favorite reads : My favorite books are Milan Kundera’s Farewell Waltz and Haruki Murakami’s Killing Commendatore.   

Favorite tunes : Here’s my current on repeat.

Favorite foods : Coffee.

Beauty tips :I spend a lot of time with people that make me smile…and I dye my eyebrows. 

Favorite ways to unwind: Going to an onsen. But when not in Japan, Los Angeles’s K-Town spas or the locker room at the LA Athletic Club will do. 


What gets you in a working flow : Before I go to sleep, I always write a handwritten to-do list that I am very inflexible with when I wake up at 5am. To get in the flow it usually starts with:

  1. Meditate
  2. Make coffee
  3. Drink Coffee

What are you working on now : I am working on manipulating the 2020 presidential election in a way that reeducates Google’s artificial intelligence and increases general literacy on how the internet works. NBD. I call this project The Next American President and the result is a series of red, white, and blue vision boards that express my hopes for the next American president. They look more like a growing garden than anything we traditionally think of as political. I am also starting work on an exhibition with Annka Kakultys for February next year called, “Other Forms of Travel.”  

Favorite motto / quote :  Thelonious Monk: “A genius is the one most like himself.”