This new exhibit at the City Center Gallery will continually evolve as its artists - Joshua Penrose and Nick Bontrager - try to outwit each other in a series of turn-based installations.

This new exhibit at the City Center Gallery will continually evolve as its artists - Joshua Penrose and Nick Bontrager - try to outwit each other in a series of turn-based installations.

"Control" is a game. The first move was by Penrose, in the form of a blank white canvas hanging on the wall. Beside it is a near-camouflaged white button. When the viewer pushes this button, the canvas rises to reveal a live video feed showing the OSU Urban Arts Space back office.

"It's like the machinations of the gallery become part of the exhibit," Penrose said.

Bontrager's first turn was next. On the opposite side of the gallery's long hallway, Bontrager's piece requires viewers put on headphones and push buttons to hear short audio clips of the artists' planning meetings for the exhibit.

Then came Penrose's second turn in the game, another blank canvas that moves to expose a peephole that viewers can look through to see construction in the room next door.

And so it will continue until each artist has had four turns.

Fictional technology provided much of the inspiration for "Control," like the button-overloaded control panels used by the likes of Captain Kirk, Obi-Wan and Batman. A tiny TV at the end of the gallery shows looping footage of those and similar scenes.

"You see these designs in fiction, and you don't know what they do until a character pushes a button," Bontrager said. "There's mystery around the source imagery, a level of not knowing how things work. We're trying to break that down."

Art can bear a similar mystery, so the guys made some of the installations interactive and left folders of the planning paperwork and emails for "Control" available for perusal on a table in the front of the exhibition.

Though the installations will be on display through the month, the game will end Aug. 18 at the exhibition's reception (5 to 7 p.m., with astronaut ice cream being served, appropriately).

The two haven't decided whether there will be a winner, but they'll likely opt to pick a dominator in this battle of techie art.

"I'm a cut-throat gamer," Penrose said, laughing.