Looking at one thing and thinking of something else
An Exhibition in Four Parts
11 November 2016 – 29 April 2017
Part Two: Observations
2-23 December 2016
Private view: Thursday 1 December, 6-8pm
Natascha Sadr Haghighian, onco-mickey-catch (2016); exhibition view Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, 2016 © Neuer Berliner Kunstverein / Jens Ziehe
Over the course of the last 10 years, I think we have seen the influence of the Internet on media to make everything shorter and more easily consumed. This influence has undoubtedly had an effect on art, including my own art with varying degrees of self awareness. Part of what interests me is the struggle to take more control over my relationship with time.
-- Evan Roth, discussing his Landscapes series
At a time where information is rapidly consumed and instant judgements have become the norm, Part Two: Observations brings together works that encourage close attention and contemplation. Using media as varied as photography, film, online data and sculpture, the works in the second part of Looking at one thing and thinking of something else interrogate our patterns of viewing, seeking to foster new, more sustained modes of engagement in our image-saturated environment.
Natascha Sadr Haghighian’s onco-mickey-catch (2016) uses a new application for image correction to investigate socially, culturally and technologically conditioned conventions of viewing. The application CatchEye uses facial recognition software to align the gaze of users of applications such as Skype, in order to give the impression that each person is looking directly into the camera and making eye contact with the other. Visitors are invited to access the application on two computer monitors embedded in a sculptural form resembling an oversized mouse, a reference to the OncoMouse™ known for being the first patented mammal. onco-mickey-catch calls attention to technologies developed in close connection with military research that have been adapted for commercial purposes, and makes manifest the ever more porous boundaries between the body and technology that inform our modes of relating.
Compression Artifacts (2013), a project by Joshua Citarella, explores how artworks are consumed within today’s model of image production and distribution. In 2013, an exhibition was held in a custom-built structure at an undisclosed location. Citarella describes that the works in the show were curated in such a way as to “anticipate their transmission as images and, as such, have taken on certain characteristics native to graphics editing software.” He explains, “Art objects and exhibition spaces may now be partially fabricated, documented and hyper-realistically transformed into idealistic states whose physical manifestation would reach beyond the material means of their producers. In a universe comprised of images, the ability to create the outward appearance of value becomes a means of empowerment.”
Christine Sun Kim and Thomas Mader’s Tables and Windows (2016) is a playful attempt to provide a new set of visual tools for mapping space and describing objects. Taking as its point of departure the sign language teacher Andreas Costrau's assertion that non-Deaf students often struggle to describe rooms and the objects within them, these two videos show Kim and Mader combining their facial expressions and hand gestures to together sign highly detailed descriptions of a variety of tables and windows.
First uploaded in 2004, Thomson & Craighead’s Template Cinema is a series of low-tech networked short films made from data appropriated in real-time from the world wide web. Each one is comprised of footage from a live webcam paired with a found soundtrack, and framed within the tropes of the cinematic experience. The vista from a surveillance camera on a coastal walkway, or the aerial view of a motorway from a traffic camera, become cast within the narrative of film and reimagined in the immersive context of cinema.
Works by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Michael Joaquin Grey, Manfred Mohr and Evan Roth will remain in the gallery from Part One: Dialogues with Art History inviting viewers to consider them anew within a different frame of investigation.
Looking at one thing and thinking of something else - Part Two: Observations includes work by Joshua Citarella, James Clar, Constant Dullaart, Michael Joaquin Grey, Mishka Henner, Christine Sun Kim, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Manfred Mohr, Evan Roth, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, and Thomson & Craighead.
For a PDF of the press release, click here.