June 3, 2017–January 7, 2018
Opening: June 2, 7pm
ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe
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The group exhibition Hybrid Layers explores the diverse aspects of what can be described as “the digital condition.” The digital becomes the picklock, the a priori, that unlocks the specific cosmos, the cultural and conceptual scenarios revealed by the individual artworks. The exhibition focuses on a generation of artists, who were confronted with the growing presence and impact of the digital sphere; it presents new perspectives on digital technology, the internet, and social networks, and explores both the virtual and the physical appearance of an artistic practice that is profoundly influenced by the digital.
Today, to focus on artworks that deal with the wider issues of technology and the digital means entering a highly complex field that cannot be subsumed under any specific category or genre. Recognizing the multiple perspectives made manifest by technology, Hybrid Layers investigates the different strands of a narrative, which is intrinsically open and multifaceted, emancipating the discourse on technology from any restrictive categorization. The installations featured in the exhibition appear as multilayered projects in which the complexity of our surroundings emerges, be it the material consistency of our environments and artificial settings or the immateriality of the digital sphere, thus revealing the kaleidoscopic facets of the functions, contradictions, and phenomena, that affect us and characterize all areas of our lives. Once the category has been exploded the field becomes a hybrid nest of multiple, layered possibilities.
Since its foundation, ZKM | Karlsruhe has focused on current developments in media art, describing the influence of contemporary technology on society and art production by means of a variety of exhibitions. While infrastructural and dystopian aspects of digital transformation were the topic of the ZKM´s exhibition program in recent years, the subject of Hybrid Layers is the real-life influences of media on a generation of artists born predominantly in the 1980s. The works on display in the exhibition reflect on contemporary social, technological, and aesthetic debates and on how extensively the digital has influenced all areas of our everyday life, our perceptions, and our production of knowledge.
The exhibition is curated by Giulia Bini, Sabiha Keyif, Daria Mille, and Philipp Ziegler.
Sophia Al Maria, Auto Italia South East, Riccardo Benassi, Enrico Boccioletti, Blunt x Skensved, Aleksandra Domanović, Ed Fornieles, Glass Bead, Guan Xiao, Yngve Holen & Aedrhlsomrs Othryutupt Lauecehrofn, Rachel de Joode, Delia Jürgens, Daniel Keller, La Plage, Lawrence Lek, Metaphysics (involved artists: Rubén Grilo, Anna K.E., Florian Meisenberg, Eddie Peake, Jack Strange and Anne de Vries; produced by: Philip Hausmeier), Katja Novitskova, Yuri Pattison, Tabita Rezaire, Unknown Fields, Anne de Vries, Yu Honglei.
LINK: Hybrid Layers
The new project by Danish artist Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Primal Tourism (2016), is an impressive multimedia tour-de-force featuring a virtual reality art work, a series of prints, and a complete walk through. The recently created Island (2017) is an installation based on Primal Tourism,
a virtual reality art project, where colonialism, tourism and science fiction intertwine with one another. The core of the project is an exact virtual replica of the iconic tourist island Borabora in French Polynesia, developed in a scale of 1:3. In the work, it is possible for the visitor to explore the entire Island freely, or journey in-between 5 key destinations: A primal eco-system with tsunami warning signs, an abandoned futuristic site for colonial remembrance, a resort worker mountain town, a submerged luxury resort and an airport taken over by invasive mosquitos and foreign palm trees. The work was developed over eight months by the artist Jakob Kudsk Steensen in the program Unreal Engine, one of the industry leading software for big industry computer game development today. This gives the work a polished and alluring look on par with big budget VR productions of today, while the landscape of the virtual Island includes abandoned tourist resorts. The creation of the virtual Island was based on actual satellite data and travel journals, which anonymous people have shared online on the forum Reddit. In addition, the logbook of Jacob Roggeveen, who ventured to the region on behalf of the East West Indian Trading company in 1722, has been a key source of inspiration for the artist. (Jakob Kudsk Steensen)
Jakob Kudsk Steensen is a Danish installation artist based in New York, who combines satellite technologies with video, virtual reality and computer generated environments with real world landscape explorations and cartographic research. His work has most recently been exhibited at The Moving Image Fair, NYC, MAXXI, Museum of Modern Art in Rome, Museum of Modern Art Valencia, Podium in Oslo, Norway, and at Sleep Center in China Town, NYC. His work has been featured on Artnet, The Art Newspaper, Hyperallergic, Spike Art Quaterly, ARTREPORT, Politiken, Information, Worm, NEO2 and TSOEG. He has received awards from the Danish Arts Foundation, The Augustinus Foundation, and in 2016 he was a finalist for Climart. He has been artist in residence at Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, AADK, Centra Negra, MASS MoCA and BRIC (Brooklyn Media Arts Center).
Prima Tourism: Island is an installation comprising wood, pool sand, artificial metal hook, rope, post-cards, monitor, lights, print on synthetic silk.
The project resembles a video game insofar as the artist released, among other things, a complete walk-though:
LINK: Jakob Kudsk Steensen (all images and videos (c) of the artist)
Ragtime is a 2015 computer simulation by British electronic arts duo Gibson and Martelli. Created through the process of procedural animation (commonly known as ragdoll), the video shows the contortions of a dying figure. The artists created an endlessly collapsing ragdoll character.
Gibson/Martelli, Ragtime, 2015, physics simulation
Alex Bonson (theninjacowboy) - The Silly Adventures of Mr. Mochi
The first ever VGA screening of Machinima: works of animation created through the real-time graphics engines of video games. The evening will offer a series of machinima shorts that serve a dual purpose: to report on the current state of Machinima as a technique and community and also to illustrate what Machinima can report on in the world and culture at large in a way that is unique to the practice.
Featuring the work of:
This event is free and NO BYOB. @ Comfort Station, 2578 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
LINK: Machinima Report (Thanks to Juliana Riska!)
A glimpse into Paolo Pedercini's new project, an experiential essay for Virtual Reality about the relationship between gaze and violence, A Short History of the Gaze. Click the image below to see more (no pun intended).
SmallTalk with Paolo Pedercini
LINK: Paolo Pedercini
Ian Cheng, Emissary Forks at Perfection, 2015–16. Collection Fondation Louis Vuitton. Courtesy of the artist; Pilar Corrias Gallery, London; and Standard (Oslo), Oslo.
EMISSARY FORKS featuring THOUSAND ISLANDS
April 21–September 9, 2017
Espace Louis Vuitton München
Hours: Monday–Friday 12–7pm,
"The Espace Louis Vuitton München is pleased to present EMISSARY FORKS featuring THOUSAND ISLANDS, the first solo exhibition in an institution in Germany by American artist Ian Cheng. It commemorates Cheng’s progressive practice in new digital art and honours his receipt of the 2017 “Award for the Filmic Oeuvre," presented by Louis Vuitton in association with KINO DER KUNST. Conceived and produced under the artistic direction of the Fondation Louis Vuitton, the exhibition showcases key works by Cheng in the framework of the Fondation’s "Hors-les-Murs" program, destined to introduce previously unseen artworks from its permanent collection to audiences of the Espaces culturels Louis Vuitton in Munich, Venice, Beijing, and Tokyo.
Cheng is an artist dissolving the boundaries between art and artificial intelligence. Drawing on the principles of video game design, cognitive science and improvisation, he develops "live simulations," living virtual ecosystems that begin with basic programmed properties, but are left to self-evolve without authorial intent or end. His simulations model the dynamics of often imaginative organisms and objects, but do so with the unforgiving causality found in nature itself. The artist describes his simulations as a form of "neurological gym": a format to exercise the feelings of confusion, anxiety and cognitive dissonance that accompany the perpetual state of change, a defining characteristic of our times.
The lower Espace gallery showcases two recent works, Emissary Forks at Perfection (2015) and Emissary Forks for You (2016). The former, displayed as a panoramic projection, simulates a fertile Darwinian playground managed by an artificial intelligence who is conducting a post-mortem analysis on 21st century humankind. The latter, an augmented-reality simulation for the Google Tango tablet, allows visitors to physically follow and interact with Shiba Emissary, a canine super-pet, through the Espace gallery and the neighbouring Maison Louis Vuitton. On the upper gallery level, Thousand Islands Thousand Laws (2013), presented on a room-size LED screen, features a video-game gunman, a flock of herons, and an island of plants that endlessly mix and mutate.
Ian Cheng is the recipient of the 2017 “Award for the Filmic Oeuvre," the third edition of the prize dedicated to an outstanding contemporary artist working at the intersection of visual arts and moving image. It is awarded by Louis Vuitton in the framework of KINO DER KUNST, Munich’s biennial festival of contemporary art and film, which in 2017 is based on the theme Fiction & Reality. The jury of this year’s award comprises: Jean-Paul Claverie (Advisor to the Chairman, Fondation Louis Vuitton), Ingvild Goetz (Founder, Goetz Collection), Hans Ulrich Obrist (Artistic Director, Serpentine Galleries), Suzanne Pagé (Artistic Director, Fondation Louis Vuitton), and Heinz-Peter Schwerfel (Artistic Director, KINO DER KUNST). Cheng’s solo show is in recognition of this partnership and his work’s recent accession to the permanent collection of the Fondation Louis Vuitton. Previous recipients of the award include Cory Arcangel (2015) and Wael Shawky (2013).
About the artist
Ian Cheng (b. 1984, Los Angeles) lives and works in New York. He holds an MFA in visual arts from Columbia University, New York (2009) and a BA in cognitive science from the University of California, Berkeley (2006). His recent solo exhibitions include Forking at Perfection, Migros Museum, Zurich (2016); Emissary in the Squat of Gods, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin (2015); Real Humans, with Wu Tsang and Jordan Wolfson, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf (2015); and Ian Cheng, La Triennale di Milano, Milan (2014). He also participated in the Liverpool Biennial 2016 and the 12th Lyon Biennial (2013), and the group shows WELT AM DRAHT, Julia Stoschek Collection, Berlin (2016); Stranger, MOCA Cleveland (2016); Suspended Animation, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC (2016); Co-Workers, Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2015); and Co-Workers: Beyond Disaster, Bétonsalon, Paris (2015). Cheng’s first solo exhibition at an American museum opened on April 9, 2017 at MoMA PS1, New York.
About the Fondation Louis Vuitton
The Fondation Louis Vuitton is an institution that serves the public interest dedicated exclusively to contemporary art and artists, as well as 20th century works to which their inspirations can be traced. The Fondation’s own collection and the exhibitions it organizes seek to engage a broad public. The building created by architect Frank Gehry constitutes the seminal artistic statement by the Fondation. This building is already recognized as an emblematic example of 21st century architecture. The Fondation Louis Vuitton has welcomed more than a million visitors per year from France and around the world since its opening in October 2014. Confirming this international recognition of the Fondation’s artistic commitment, the exhibition Icons of Modern Art, The Shchukin Collection (October 2016–March 2017) received a record-breaking 1.2 million visitors.
From its opening in Paris, the Fondation Louis Vuitton announced that it would engage in international initiatives, both at the Fondation and in partnership with public and private institutions, including other foundations and museums. The Fondation is also responsible for the artistic direction of a specific “Hors-les-murs” program within its cultural spaces in Munich, Venice, Beijing and Tokyo, which are exclusively devoted to exhibitions of works from its collection. The exhibitions they organize are open to the public free of charge, and their programs are promoted through specific cultural communication."
"MoMA PS1 presents Ian Cheng’s (b. 1984) first US museum solo presentation, featuring the artist’s complete Emissary trilogy (2015–17), a series of live simulation works created using a video game engine. Described by the artist as “a video game that plays itself,” the works are comprised of computer-generated simulations like those used in predictive technologies for complex scenarios such as climate change or elections. Populated by a cast of characters and wildlife that interact, intervene, and recombine in open-ended narratives, Cheng’s simulations evolve endlessly as self-contained ecosystems. The exhibition Emissaries marks the completion of this series of works, which contemplate timeless questions about evolution, the origins of human consciousness, and ways of relating to a chaotic existence. The trilogy was recently acquired by The Museum of Modern Art and is on display for the first time at MoMA PS1."
Live Stream Schedule on MoMa's Twitch channel:
“Emissary in the Squat of Gods,” April 9 to May 22
“Emissary Forks at Perfection,” June 6 to July 24
“Emissary Sunsets the Self,” August 8 to September 25
LINK: Ian Cheng at MoMa
Pippin Barr's latest project is an (in)direct homage to Harun Farocki. Barr adapted the first chapter of his monumental work Parallel (2012-2014) project into an interactive, virtual museum about digital water set in the Marfa buildings (read, the 3D models) used for his previous project v r 2. Sounds convoluted? Not really, It's pure genius. Available for Mac and PC, v r 3 is, on the surface, pure liquid fetish, but like the German director, Barr is deeply obsessed with the status of digital images. I wonder if we will get a museum of virtual trees as well in the near future as well.
Read more about the project here.
LINK: Pippin Barr
A large scale exhibition during the 57th Venice Biennale (Arsenale Nord)
Preview days May 9 – 12, 2017
Open to the public from May 13 – October 30, 2017
The upcoming Biennial of Art in Venice, Italy will host the very first HyperPavilion, focusing on the latest and greatest in digital art. Expect, not necessarily in this order, large scale projections; a 360° immersive cinema, a hologram theatre, multi-screen installations, and hybrids artworks.
Curated by Philippe Riss-Schmidt, this group show will include several international artists whose works investigate the nature of simulation, virtuality, and simulacra: Aram Bartholl (Berlin), Vincent Broquaire (Strasbourg); Claude Closky (Paris), Frederik De Wilde (Bruxelles), Lab NT2 (Montréal), Lawrence Lek (London), Claire Malrieux (Paris), Théo Massoulier (Lion), Julien Prévieux (Grenoble), Paul Souviron (Strasbourg), and Theo Triantafyllidis (Athens).
All artworks are site specific and most of them were created specifically for this project.
Claire Malrieux, Climat général, 360 generative, preliminary drawings
According to curator Philippe Riss-Schmidt, "Right now, we are standing at the edge of a new age where the synthetisation of the past into a ‘perfect’ (neo-)future has begun. Cultural artefacts, images and data are mined like new gold, for machines to extract. We will consume it until it all blurs. Past, present and future will melt into each other. The digital and the internet are neither over nor surpassed, they are not a medium – it is the new era. Post-digital art is everywhere".
What can I say, it sounds very hyper.
Expect a full report in the next few months.
UPDATED ON APRIL 21 2017: The original line-up featured twelve artists. Andrea Crespo (New York); Ed Fornieles (Montréal); Angelo Plessas (Athens), and Julien Prévieux (Paris) are no longer included.