On June 20, 2017, the BBC evening news opener broke down. For four minutes, a breaking-news animation alternated random still pictures with tracking shots of a presenter who sat stoically in silence. The elements of the familiar sequence were jumbled, messed up and nonsensical.
The scene was the result of a technical glitch — a system crash. But it also served as an image of automation run amok, of decades of breaking news finally resulting in broken news.
The message still resonates: In this new age of artificial stupidity, technological disruption has turned destructive. Its greatest victim is reality itself....
The exhibition at Kunsthalle Wien turns the spotlight on works in which architecture, design, or constellations of seemingly mundane objects are revealed to be visual manifestations of complex genealogies. The Versuchsanstalt für Wasserbau und Schiffsbau in Berlin, an iconic building that houses facilities for experiments in fluid mechanics and ship engineering, appears in Kelm’s photograph as an abstract architectonic volume of color. In the series Friendly Tournament, the shooting targets pitted with holes and small craters where they were struck by arrows recall Lucio Fontana’s perforated canvases and offer an analysis of the interrelation between figure and ground, between three-dimensional reality and its representation, that is both intellectually astute and laconic. Yet here, too, something inscrutable remains.
Castello di Rivoli launches a symposium on Artificial Intelligence with the participation of theorists, privacy and data management experts, consultants in the field of architecture and security development systems, chosen with artist Hito Steyerl. Titled The City of Broken Windows, Hito Steyerl’s new sound and video-based multimedia installation presented in the Manica Lunga at Castello di Rivoli, drafted by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev and Marianna Vecellio, stems from her research into Artificial Intelligence industry practices and surveillance technologies. Through this work, Steyerl explores how AI affects our urban environment and how alternative practices may emerge through pictorial acts in the public space.
Featuring new work spanning sculpture, installation, performance, audio work and text by six artists chosen specially for the opening of Collective, Affinity and Allusion will be presented across all of Collective’s exhibition spaces, grounds and buildings. The artists brought together all create art which fundamentally asks us to question how we view the world around us, an approach that is central to Collective’s vision for a new kind of city observatory on Calton Hill.
Walker Moving Image Commissions returns this fall. Artists Kevin Jerome Everson and Deborah Stratman have each been commissioned to create new videos responding to the inspiration, inquiry, and influence of key artists in the Walker’s Ruben/Bentson Moving Image Collection. Everson connects to gospel music and iconic rock-and-roll singer Little Richard in William Klein’s documentary The Little Richard Story (1980) through the African American communities of Mansfield, Ohio, while Stratman incorporates the sound, text, and teachings of Maya Deren in a montage responding to artist Barbara Hammer’s unused film footage. Drawing together an array of footage, photographs, and texts from archival and contemporary sources, the two new works reach into the past to explore contemporary life, art, and creative expression. The new commissions will be available to view online through January 8, 2019 and in gallery as part of the exhibition, Platforms: Collection and Commissions, opening November 15, 2018.
Hito Steyerl focuses on the role of media, technology and the circulation of images in the era of digital nativism. The artist creates installations in which film production is associated with the construction of architectural environments. For her exhibition at Castello di Rivoli, she premieres The City of Broken Windows (2018), stemming from research into the practices of Artificial Intelligence industries, surveillance technologies and the contradictory roles Museums often play today. The City of Broken Windows revolves around neural sound recordings that, like an atonal and discordant symphony, document the process of teaching artificial intelligence how to recognize the sound of breaking windows, a practice that symbolizes social disruption. Steyerl explores how AI affects our urban environment and how alternative practices may emerge through pictorial acts in the public space. Chris Toepfer, protagonist of the new work, will board up Castello di Rivoli with trompe l’oeil window paintings. Steyerl’s new project offers an intriguing perspective on how the digital contemporary imagination shapes our emotions and experience of reality.
The Hepworth Prize for Sculpture was established in 2016 as a £30,000 biennial award recognizing a British or UK-based artist of any age, at any stage in their career who has made a significant contribution to the development of contemporary sculpture.
An exploration of the technological and surreal imaginary of the artists of today, from computer-generated dreams to creative algorithms and avatars that question the meaning of existence.
More than just an exhibition, but a workshop for study and debate on themes and issues associated with our relationship with technology and the incredible scenarios opened by its evolution: Low Form. Imaginaries and Visions in the Age of Artificial Intelligence is an immersive, multimedia and multisensory display.
Presenting work by 32 artists and artist collectives, the exhibition invites visitors to explore what it means to be “international” at this moment in time, and to experience museum joy. The pleasure of being with art and other people inspired the composition of this International—a series of encounters with contemporary art inside the world of Carnegie Museum of Art.
Fondazione Giuliani is pleased to present Tan Lines, a solo exhibition by Norwegian artist Fredrik Værslev. Værslev’s practice is a reflection on the act of painting as the result of a creative process dominated by the tension between careful planning and randomness. Interested in upending definitions, convictions and the limits of the pictorial medium, the genesis of his paintings is largely the result of a perpetual encounter/clash between control and chance. After having conceived an artwork with absolute rigour, Værslev often alters it through the intervention of fortuitous circumstances (exposing it to the weather, leaving it in nature or public places), or asking friends to freely modify and complete it, pushing the idea of appropriation to an extreme. In Værslev’s paintings, abstraction and figuration coexist, traditional materials alternate with the industrial, painting and graphic design merge, as well as the planned gestures of the artist with the accidental ones of fate.
Lua Cão is an experimental exercise derived from the intersection of works by Alexandre Estrela and João Maria Gusmão + Pedro Paiva, originally presented at an old sawmill by Galeria Zé dos Bois. The exhibition curated by Natxo Checa consists of twenty moving-image pieces: videos by Alexandre Estela and 16mm films by João Maria Gusmão + Pedro Paiva. Presented in this former industrial area, these works were not only shown on screens or similar media but also formed a constellation of pieces that were activated at different moments during the visit. Thanks to this configuration, Lua Cão is presented as a performative film production rooted in a mechanical vision, which rejects conventional perspective in favour of an immersive, panoptic experience.
Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art, 1965–2018 establishes connections between works of art based on instructions, spanning over fifty years of conceptual, video, and computational art. The pieces in the exhibition are all “programmed” using instructions, sets of rules, and code, but they also address the use of programming in their creation. The exhibition links two strands of artistic exploration: the first examines the program as instructions, rules, and algorithms with a focus on conceptual art practices and their emphasis on ideas as the driving force behind the art; the second strand engages with the use of instructions and algorithms to manipulate the TV program, its apparatus, and signals or image sequences. Featuring works drawn from the Whitney’s collection, Programmed looks back at predecessors of computational art and shows how the ideas addressed in those earlier works have evolved in contemporary artistic practices.
Astrup Fearnley Museet is proud to present a solo exhibition by the Norwegian contemporary artist Fredrik Værslev.
The present exhibition shows 10 series from the last 10 years of Værslev’s artistic production. Værslev himself has determined how the paintings should be displayed, which make the exhibition an artwork in itself. The individual works become elements of a larger installation, whose structure avoids all obvious, orthodox solutions. Without introducing new walls or coming into conflict with the existing architecture, Værslev has hung the works in parallel formations that reflect the shape of the museum building, but in an unconventional way.
On the occasion of the opening of Swiss Institute’s new home at 38 St. Marks Place, SI has commissioned and borrowed a series of semi-permanent works and installations exhibited in non-gallery spaces of the building. In the reception area, reading room, stairways, hallways, roof, elevator and other interstitial spaces, artists have contributed to the daily life of the building with artworks in the form of plants, scents, curtains, murals, clothing, seating, a visitor survey and more.
If I had to elect one artist to elegize the end of if not America, then the industrialized world, it would be Michael E. Smith. Working with found and appropriated materials, which have been known to include everything from animal parts to textiles to car parts to human bone, not to mention everything in-between, Smith creates supremely laconic and darkly comic sculptures that seem to come to us from a future that we would either prefer not to or cannot imagine. Whether or not we, as a species, actually figure in that future is unclear (indeed, whether or not we would even want to figure in it is something else entirely). But something seems to have happened there (where? looming on the horizon) in which the objects, tools and technologies we once used to negotiate it no longer seem to possess the uses for which they were intended. Something has happened. Is happening. Will have happened. Already. Behold these stark and gnarled elegies.
For his project Somewhere Safer, Camille Blatrix modifies Kunstverein Braunschweig’s Remise, reorganizing the spatial situation with architectural interventions. As a harbinger of the show, the entrance area, that is usually perceived en passant, is transformed into a nostalgic waiting room. Sculptures, paintings and a “soundtrack” produced on-site are condensed into a tense, at times menacing atmosphere of waiting. Each element testifies to the fear and anticipation of an imminent event, whereby the expectation and accumulated exertion that also arise from the manipulated air circulation affect the human body. Candlelight and ears of corn recur as symbols of live/decease and carry a sense of fruitfulness, sexual lust, and dedication. Shielded by handcrafted wooden pieces, only parts of the Remise are accessible, while other rooms remain hidden in the gleaming light. This way, Somewhere Safer presents itself as an ambivalent oasis—a private retreat that suggests protection from an outside world and a feeling of anxiety and inner strife at once.
The Polish-British artist Goshka Macuga (born 1967) works in the field of installations, using media as varied as photo collage, sculpture, large-format tapestry, video and performance. She is known for her diverse approach that extends to the curatorial and the narrative. Using extensive artistic research, she develops storylines for her works and exhibitions in which she combines fiction and history. Her “materials” are pivotal moments in human history, as well as works by other artists, which she stages in playful displays.Macuga is interested in the myriad connections within cultural history, especially that of the international avant-gardes of the twentieth century.
Inherent Structure showcases a multigenerational group of 16 exceptional artists who challenge abstract painting’s historical associations with chance, gesture, and aesthetic purity. The works presented here instead reveal the deliberate structures embedded in abstraction, illustrating how contemporary practices emerge not just from formal conventions exclusive to painting, but also from the artists’ particular material, psychological, and sociopolitical concerns.
The exhibition at the Kunstmuseum Basel | Present presents works by Martha Rosler (Brooklyn, NY) and Hito Steyerl (Berlin).She puts both early and current works into a dialogue conceived jointly with the artists. Rosler and Steyerl are exhibiting together for the first time - both are also the first comprehensive show in Switzerland. In addition to numerous video works, photos, photomontages, banners and objects, on two floors of the building you will see expansive multimedia installations that confront visitors with spectacularly staged high-tech imagery.
The works of both artists address the interfaces between politics and the mass media. Both in their artistic as well as theoretical production, Rosler and Steyerl reflect the connection between our perception of social reality and the audiovisual media that are essential for their mediation.
Hayley Tompkins works with painting, photography and found objects to make installations that highlight the process of looking and experiencing space. Through her practice she seeks to understand objects in the world through an examination of the mimetic quality of paint and painting. For Tompkins the act of painting is a process of thinking and exploring, rather than as a means to simply produce paintings. Her work attempts to find new ways to challenge and explore painting’s transformational possibilities, in order to construct a balance between the pictorial and the physical. The exhibition at Bonner Kunstverein is a new commission and is Tompkin’s first major solo exhibition in Germany.
Images Festival showcases artistic excellence in contemporary moving image culture through screening programs, gallery exhibitions, live performances, and discursive events. Since 1988, Images has presented media works that open critical dialogues and provides alternative ways of thinking and seeing, expanding the understanding of moving image art through our programming and education-based initiatives.
The 31st edition of Images Festival presents 13 gallery exhibitions, 78 on-screen works, and five live performances taking place throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
Everything is going to be fine sets out to examine the emotional charge of technology. In a divergent set of artworks spanning across mobile phone, sculpture, digital video and performance, each artist engages a technological object detached from pure utility, leaning towards a feeling-driven interaction with its user. At times caring, comical, or hostile, the depicted machines take on human-like personalities by serving as containers or channels for a variety of emotions: what artist Camille Blatrix has called “emotional objects.
When I was offered the opportunity to create a show for Downstairs Projects I decided to approach the exhibition and the interview printed in the accompanying zine as a personal investigation into my own relationship with photography. While my work is primarily based in sculpture, photography has been vital to my development as an artist and I thought it would be useful to explore my connection to the medium. After reviewing my archive of photographs and answering the questions posed to me in the interview, I came to the realization that my core interest in photography lies simply in a basic need to frame and document my own sculpture. I had tried several different photographic strategies throughout my career, but I ultimately found them unfulfilling - it was not enough for me to photograph the existing world or directly appropriate a pre-existing image - I needed to have a hand in the creation and staging of the subject in front of the camera as well.
Democracy appears to be in crisis, the era of post-democracy has already dawned. The symptoms are manifold: populist leaders, fake news, autocratic backlash, totalitarian propaganda, and neoliberalism. For some time, however, society has also been experiencing the path of the art’s return to the political—a re-politicization is palpable. Images of demonstrations in the media have shaped public perception in recent years: waving flags, posters, or banners on streets and squares, at the Women’s March, in anti-Brexit campaigns, or in Occupy actions. There have been renewed waves of protest relating to very diverse contexts, countries, and political systems. This has affected artists as well. They create works that they regard as instruments of critique and explicitly motivated by politics.
Marc Camille Chaimowicz (b. post-war Paris) established himself in the 1970s London art scene as an artist who merged performance and installation art in a manner as playful as it was critical and sensual. This large-scale survey is the artist’s first solo museum exhibition in the United States. It will present Chaimowicz’s cross-disciplinary work in sculpture, painting, video, collage, installation, and design made over his nearly 50 year career, including commissions newly created for the occasion.
"Germany is not an island" - this quote is not consciously assigned to anybody, but was and is used by different personalities in different contexts. It is clear, however, that the exhibition is intended to describe the multicultural location 'Germany', a place where everyone is welcome. And a place where all the arts can develop interdisciplinary. Art often seeks the confrontation with traditional perspectives and ideas and thus opens up spaces that also call for greater tolerance, openness and reflection. It needs no social consensus, no vote, but is first and foremost free. Politically, however, she is still, and socially-promoting power also resides in her, especially when she invokes her freedom and her obstinacy.
NEW YORK, January 29, 2018—Paintings, sculptures, video, film, and works on paper by 35 contemporary artists will be exhibited in the galleries of the American Academy of Arts and Letters on historic Audubon Terrace (Broadway between 155 and 156 Streets) from Thursday, March 8 through Sunday, April 8, 2018. Exhibiting artists were chosen from over 100 nominees submitted by the members of the Academy, America’s most prestigious honorary society of architects, artists, writers, and composers. The recipients of the Academy’s 2018 Art and Purchase Awards will be selected from this exhibition.
Michael E. Smith (*1977) works with discarded things, resonant with the accumulated traces of their existence, and transformed through the simplest of gestures into captivating, uncannily sentient sculptures. For his first solo exhibition in Switzerland, the Detroit-born artist creates new works that expand his peculiar archaeology of humanity in the 21st century.
I've always been fascinated by hold-ups, burglaries and the like. This fascination probably comes from the fact that I find them rather romantic, but it might also be connected to the fact that I was born in a southern suburb of Paris where Diego Ferrera, a local contemporary criminal hero, grew up. What excites me in all this is the allure of desire, the thirst for action, the thrill of escape, and finally, the way the villain thumbs his nose at society. I imagine my old friend Camille shares the same interest in these kinds of robber-hero stories; the theme certainly forms the focus of his exhibition at Taylor Macklin, which presents a situation that might have been contextualised beforehand by poetically taking the exhibition space hostage. If you look around you, everything leads you to that conclusion.
Fictive kinships mimic familial relationships but are ultimately defined on their own terms. Fictive Kin presents works by three contemporary artists who all construct photographic tableaux, and are united by their cultivation of modes of seeing that question conventions behind the photographic representation of three-dimensional objects. Sarah Conaway, Annette Kelm, and Kim Schoen harness the visual language of commercial art and advertising. At its most effective, advertising renders the photograph a signifier that we subconsciously identify as assuming an authoritative voice. It serves a clear purpose and delivers an inscrutable message. In the work of these artists, similar strategies are used to subversive, absurd, and philosophical ends. They communicate the arbitrariness of inherited conventions, solicit humor, and render anew the vernacular visual environment that so engulfs us that we may be unaware of it.
Michael E. Smith (b. 1977) transforms found objects into hauntingly sparse sculptures that reveal only the most rudimentary traces of their former function. Composed of natural and synthetic detritus, the sculptures are distilled to abstract, often loosely corporeal forms that highlight the tension between our affinity for excess and penchant for wastefulness. Smith's installations are immersive experiences, rather than straightforward presentations of sculptural objects. Careful consideration of the architectural and ambient features of the exhibition space is integral to his process, as too are the social aesthetics and politics of Smith's hometown of Detroit, which specifically come to bear on this exhibition, the first major museum show by the artist in his native state of Michigan.
Originally presented by Galeria Zé dos Bois in Azores and Lisbon, Lua Cão is the result of more than a decade and a half of conversation between Checa, Estrela, and Gusmão and Paiva. The title refers to a rare optical phenomenon where the moon’s light is refracted to appear in a halo with a pair of adjacent ‘moon dogs’. Moons, eyeballs, multiple exposures, tunnels, light rays, and atmospheric and optical illusions proliferate throughout the exhibition to emphasize the role the mechanics of vision plays in both artistic practices, and to demonstrate their shared interest in the moving image that consistently connects abstractions to illusions, the everyday to the impossible.
Art as radar acts as “an early alarm system,” as it were, enabling us to discover social and psychic targets in lots of time to prepare to cope with them.*1. These were the words of media theorist Marshall McLuhan, writing in Understanding Media with sharp insight in the 1960s and predicting the social revolution that new technology would bring. Half a century has now passed since McLuhan published his important work, and the Internet has permeated our society and new technological innovations like artificial intelligence are rapidly advancing. “Any technology tends to create a new human environment.”
The complex relationship between image and reality has long been one of the most important topics in art.
In this exhibition, the National Museum shows works from the last four decades by close to forty prominent artists. Using a variety of approaches, they all address the surfeit of images we see all around us.
The visual deluge that supposedly represents our lives, our times, our world. News clips, holiday snaps, flickers from the depths of the internet. A fragmented intermediate world, half illusion, half reality. Excerpts and selections. And in the midst of it all: glimpses of truth. Images with the power to change the world.
The large-scale abstract paintings of Fredrik Værslev confront established conventions, definitions and limitations within the medium of painting. Using both traditional and industrial materials and techniques he creates compositions that draw influence from diverse sources including Abstract and Minimialist painting and graphic design. His exhibition at Bonner Kunstverein will present a series of new works that are co-commissioned with Kunst Halle Sankt Gallen and Fondazione Giuliani, Rome.
This exhibition is organized around the premise that objects of contemporary art possess narrative histories and inner lives that the conventions of display can only, at best, approximate. Through the work of over thirty international artists, Stories of Almost Everyone seeks to address the means by which a broad range of contemporary artworks and artifacts traffic in meaning and mythology in equal measure. The challenge that textual mediation poses to the inherent muteness of objects provides a framework for thinking through the potential for ideas facilitated by art to expand into other realms of thought. The varying artistic approaches brought together for this exhibition are as equally emboldened by a faith in objects to communicate their inherent value, as they are skeptical of the conditions of museological mediation and art’s promise to convey meaning.