23 Mar – 28 Jul 2019
The National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art,
Korea (MMCA, Director Youn Bummo), presents
Vertiginous Data, an international exhibition of multidisciplinary art, from
Saturday, March 23 to Sunday, July 28 at MMCA Seoul, Galleries 3 and 4.
exhibition, featuring fourteen works by ten domestic and overseas
artists/groups, presents various ways in which data, as a public utility, is
creatively mobilized for aesthetic production through pieces on a range of
data-based topics including big data, blockchains, and AI.
exhibition title Vertiginous Data illuminates the economic and ethical aspects
of data as communal utility, based on its non-neutral trait. In a time when
everything, from aspects of our daily lives to national organizations, is
analyzed and processed into “data,” data has come to govern not only individual
lives but also social paradigms. The social impact of the digital environment
serves as cause for hope but also concern regarding technologically powered
visions of the future. Participating artists explore the aesthetic faculties of
digital technology, discover the shortfalls of the digital environment, and
identify uncontrollable chasms in their attempt to offer artistic
exhibition comprises three sections: the
democracy and anti-feudalism of the digital mechanism; how contemporary artists utilize data; and new propositions using digital mechanisms.
first section displays representative works by Forensic Architecture, Superflex, and Zach Blas. Analyzing and
systematizing collected data, they attempt to reclaim civil rights and freedom
from the anti-democratic events that result from global corporatism and
government monopolies of information.
the second section, Rachel Ara
investigates the interrelation between sexuality, technology, and power
structures by reflecting real-time data collections. Cao Fei offers a witty view of the ironies we see amidst the
radical social shifts in the digital age using autonomously operative robotic
vacuum cleaners, while Chris Shen
compares the collection and dissipation of data to cosmic phenomena using 360
small robot balls.
the third section, Simon Denny and Harm
van den Dorpel experiment with the realm of creativity, the limitations of
freedom, and the futuristic potential of technology with blockchains. Sylbee Kim highlights long-standing
values that are revealed at each state whereby new technologies transform the
human condition through the three keywords of finance, credit, and spirituality
in the new video piece. Woonghyun Kim
presents a video about a post-apocalyptic novel he wrote by randomly choosing
an event and weaving together the resultantly produced data links.
correlation with the exhibition, the MMCA also presents artist talks in which
participating artists converse with Korean art critics. The first talk takes
place on Friday, March 22, featuring Rachel Ara and Harm van den Dorpel with
curator Nathalie Boseul Shin, and the second event will be held on Saturday,
March 23, with Jakob Fenger (Superflex) and Professor Alex Taek-Gwang Lee
(Kyung Hee University). The talk on Friday, March 29 will be led by Sylbee Kim
and critic Mun Hyejin.
information is available on the MMCA website (www.mmca.go.kr).