“Antarktika” at Kunsthalle Wien (Contemporary Art Daily)

Joanna Piotrowska, V, Frowst, 2013 – 2014, Courtesy Southard Reid, London

Joanna Piotrowska, V, Frowst, 2013 – 2014, Courtesy Southard Reid, London

Artists: Viltė Bražiūnaitė / Tomas Sinkevičius, Burak Delier, Buck Ellison, Isabella Fürnkäs, Eva Giolo, Thibaut Henz, Jan Hoeft, Hanne Lippard, Joanna Piotrowska, Jeroen de Rijke / Willem de Rooij, Jana Schulz, Andrzej Steinbach, Ingel Vaikla, Peter Wächtler, Ian Wallace, Tobias Zielony

Venue: Kunsthalle Wien

Exhibition Title: Antarktika

Curated By: Vanessa Joan Müller, Nicolaus Schafhausen

Date: October 25, 2018 – February 17, 2019

Click here to view slideshow


Ian Wallace, At the Crosswalk VI, 2008, Courtesy Hauser & Wirth, Zurich

Isabella Fürnkäs. In Ekklesia, 2015, Courtesy the artist.

Full gallery of images, press release, and link available after the jump.


Images courtesy of Kunsthalle Wien. Photos by Jorit Aust.

Press Release:

In a sketch for a film, Michelangelo Antonioni notes: “The Antarctic glaciers are moving in our direction at a rate of three millimeters per year. Calculate when they’ll reach us. Anticipate, in a film, what will happen.”

Metaphorically speaking, to feel cold means to feel deeply alienated. Alienation was already a dominant concern for sociologists around 1900: the alienation of man from society through individualization, alienation from nature through urbanization, alienation from work through mechanization. For philosophers like Theodor W. Adorno, alienation thus turns into a key concept in terms of the role art plays in and for society: Without alienation there is no art, and ultimately it is only art that prevents total alienation.

Ironically, it is the countercultural protest against “social coldness” and against the “rigidification” of middle-class society in the 1960s that anticipates the ideologemes of flexible Capitalism 2.0. This move, in fact, paves the way for a new type of alienation – one which reverses the metaphorics: Coldness and rigidity are replaced by liquefaction, start-up and dynamics – social alienation, however, continues even as people now strive for self-optimization.

Antarctica looks at the pattern underlying alienation – this “relationship based on the absence of a relationship.” Showing numerous contemporary artworks; the exhibition explores how the term “alienation” functions in our world today. In doing so, it also addresses the following question: What other forms of relationship to the self and to the world do we need? Before we can even begin to create something like a space supportive of self-determination and self-realization?

The exhibition is preceded by a symposium on the subject.

Link: “Antarktika” at Kunsthalle Wien

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