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Anticipations Of A Post-Human Age At Art Tower Mito Contemporary Art Gallery

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Anticipations Of A Post-Human Age At Art Tower Mito Contemporary Art Gallery
David Blandy, “Tutorial: How to make a short video about extinction” (2014). Courtesy of: Seventeen Gallery, London

Currently on view at Art Tower Mito Contemporary Art Gallery is the exhibition ‘Hello World- For the Post-Human Age.’ The gallery is located in downtown Mito, of the Ibaraki Prefecture of Japan, which is just a short ride away from Tokyo via JR local express train. The exhibition will remain on view until May 6, 2018. This exhibition includes 8 artists and pairs working in new mediums to discuss the body and technology in present and future potentials. The selected works on view speak of a moment which is now; between the past understanding of place, and the future projections of anticipated outcomes. The position varies within the artists works and covers a broad range of emotions: speculative, hopeful, nebulous, critical, among others.

Simon Denny, “Blockchain Visionaries / Information booth for fairs and special postal stamps” Collaboration with Linda Kantchev. (2016) Installation view: 9th Berlin Biennale, Germany (2016) Photo: Hans-Georg Gaul. Commissioned and co-produced by Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art. Courtesy of: the artist and Galerie Buchholz Cologne / Berlin / New York (Referential image)

Junya Yamamine is the curator of the exhibition, and the Contemporary Art Center at Art Tower Mito in general. The works on view speak about the way in which the internet has become an intrinsic part of our everyday lives. The curatorial lens of the show is inspired by the theoretical discourse of Marshall McLuhan, who spoke about society and its relationship with and to technology. The notion of a “post-human age” is directly responsive to ideas of McLuhan, as he believed it was possible for technology to shape the very fabric of a human fabrication of reality to create a new environment altogether. These ideas are further articulated in his 1962 text, “The Gutenberg Galaxy: the Making of Typographic Man.”

Cécile B. Evans, “Sprung a Leak” (2016). Courtesy of: the artist and Emanuel Layr Galerie, Vienna * The performance runs for 18 minutes. Please visit “Hello World” website for further information.

The nowness that is prominent in the work through playing with past, present and future projections of time allows the audience to reimagine their relationship to the content of the media on view.

A juxtaposition of two images depicting seemingly separate outcomes is presented on the monitor of David Blandy’s 2014 piece “Tutorial: How to make a short video about extinction.” One of the moving images depicts the breakdown of an advanced society. It achieves this through showing the destruction and erasure of what hauntingly is recognizable and referential to as not so far off from the present day situation, and set of potentials that surround it. The second video depicts the process of a literal video itself being made. This is through the utilization of an online database, where the speed at which the video starts to take form is immediate. The nowness that is prominent in the work through playing with past, present and future projections of time allows the audience to reimagine their relationship to the content of the media on view.

Hito Steyerl, “How Not to be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational” (2013). Courtesy of: the artist and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York.

He critically comments on this new value system through the use of the visual cue of a board game. Denny applies this visual cue to illustrate the parallels between the game and everyday life.

In “Blockchain Visionaries/ Information booth for fairs and special postal stamps” artist Simon Denny shows another set disstopian of images. Denny is renowned for his perceptions in the digital world and his formation of astute perceptions on the works. Of interest to Denny is the values which are made and perpetuated in the digital, which he aims to articulate through his artworks. The work on view is realized in collaboration with Linda Kantchev in 2016. The core concept being communicated in his work is in regards to blockchain, which is an internationally backed form of cryptocurrency. He critically comments on this new value system through the use of the visual cue of a board game. Denny applies this visual cue to illustrate the parallels between the game and everyday life.

Kenta Cobayashi, “Pink and Blue, #blur #sharpness” (2016). Courtesy of: the artist and G/P Gallery.

“Address” (2010-ongoing) is the recent work of Akihiko Taniguchi on view. The intersection and divergence from both physically real and virtual spaces, as well as the ability to pass between one state and another, are what drives Taniguchi’s works. The photographic image on view is pieced together from a compilation of survelled footages to comment on the larger network that occurs both in the immediate space, as well as the secondary space of the internet. Everyone and everything is being watched at all times.

Akihiko Taniguchi, “address” (2010-ongoing). Courtesy of: the artist.

 

The Contemporary Art Gallery at Art Tower Mito is closed on Mondays with the exception of select dates. Please see the website for further information. Hours of operation include: from 9:30 to 18:00, with no admittance after 17:30. For further information of scheduled events, including: educational programming, artist and curator talks, accessibility, and further general information, please visit: https://www.arttowermito.or.jp/dir_download/pressrelease/HelloWorld_PR_en_0120.pdf


Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors.


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