Metahaven: Information Skies
Auto Italia || Mumbai Art Room
October 4th – November 6th 2016
Withdrawn into the forest, a young couple imagine themselves to be living a life of great danger; as warriors, or dragons. Trying to reason with their sense of self, they remove their VR headsets.
Dreams and waking experience blend and they no longer see their reflections in the screens. The blindfold wraps around their eyes and they seek the edges of a new reality, searching for universal symbols: the stars, the forest, the darkness. Caught between past and future; subject to a new judicial order, pleading a case to an unseeing jury, whose reality is not theirs, who have not seen what they are seeing.
Information Skies is the first UK solo exhibition by the Dutch art and design studio Metahaven. Opening concurrently at Mumbai Art Room, it is also the collective’s first exhibition in India.
Metahaven’s 2016 film project Information Skies weaves new realities, informed by VR. Through a dramatisation of this experiential technology, using live footage and animation, concepts of authenticity and lived experience are positioned as fictional provocations. How might we understand ‘truth’ and ‘law’ in a world of infinitely self-producing belief systems?
Alongside Information Skies, Auto Italia will present Metahaven’s documentary film installation The Sprawl (Propaganda About Propaganda), a 70-minute dive into online and offline truths, fictions, and their sponsors. Guided by commentary of Benjamin H. Bratton, Maryam Monalisa Gharavi, and Peter Pomerantsev, The Sprawl (Propaganda About Propaganda) identifies how planetary-scale interface culture is transforming geopolitics and state power.
Taken together, The Sprawl and Information Skies become a new cinematic topography, creating fragmented territories of images and suggestions, and building a worldview that is at once attractive and terrifying.
Metahaven’s 2016 film Information Skies was commissioned by the 11th Gwangju Biennale.
Founded by Vinca Kruk and Daniel van der Velden, Metahaven is a collective operating on the cutting blade of design, art, aesthetics and politics. Metahaven’s practice consists of projects across design, art, theory, exhibitions, publications, lectures, and filmmaking. Recent solo presentations include ‘The Sprawl’, YCBA, San Francisco (2015), ‘Black Transparency’, Future Gallery, Berlin, (2014), and ‘Islands in the Cloud’, MoMA PS1, New York (2013). Recent group exhibitions include ‘The Eighth Climate (What Does Art Do?)’, 11th Gwangju Bienniale (2016), ‘All of This Belongs to You’, V&A, London (2015), ‘Private Settings: Art After the Internet’, Warsaw Museum of Modern Art (2014), and ‘Immaterial Labour Isn’t Working’, Auto Italia, London, (2013). Recent publications include ‘Black Transparency’ (2015), ‘Can Jokes Bring Down Governments?’ (2013), ‘VOID MYSTIQUE DNA’ in collaboration with Deterritorial Support Group (DSG), published with Auto Italia (2013), and ‘Uncorporate Identity’ (2010). Videos by Metahaven include ‘Home’ (2014), and ‘Interference’ (2015), both for musician, composer and artist Holly Herndon, as part of an ongoing collaboration. Metahaven’s first full-length documentary, ‘The Sprawl (Propaganda about Propaganda)’, premiered at the International Film Festival Rotterdam in 2016.
Information Skies | Talks Programme with Suhail Malik and Ben Vickers
October 28th & 29th
Please join us for a series of talks held on the occasion of Metahaven’s exhibition Information Skies. We’re pleased to announce that Metahaven will be joined by lecturer and writer Suhail Malik, and curator, writer and technologist Ben Vickers. Both of the the events are free to attend, however booking is necessary.
Ben Vickers in conversation with Metahaven
Friday 28th October 2016, 7-9pm
In the first of two conversations, Ben Vickers talks to Vinca Kruk and Daniel van der Velden about Information Skies and The Sprawl (Propoganda About Propaganda)—scope, aesthetics, and politics.
Suhail Malik in conversation with Metahaven
Saturday 29th October 2016, 2-4pm
In their first joint public event since the “Backbench” of Manifesta 8 in Murcia, 2010, Suhail Malik, Vinca Kruk, and Daniel van der Velden discuss evolutions of practice in art, filmmaking, writing and design.
Suhail Malik is Co-Director of the MFA Fine Art, Goldsmiths, London, where he holds a Readership in Critical Studies, and was 2012-15 Visiting Faculty at CCS Bard, New York. Recent and forthcoming publications include, as author, On the Necessity of Art’s Exit From Contemporary Art (2017) and ‘The Ontology of Finance’ in Collapse 8: Casino Real (2015), and, as co-editor, The Time-Complex. Postcontemporary (2016), Genealogies of Speculation (2016), and Realism Materialism Art (2015).
Ben Vickers is a curator, writer, explorer, technologist, and luddite. Currently he is Curator of Digital at Serpentine Galleries, Co-Director of LIMAZULU Project Space, a Near Now Fellow, Trustee at Auto Italia, and facilitator for the open-source development of unMonastery, a new civically minded social space prototyped in Matera, Italy during 2014 and now set to replicate throughout Europe. During his spare time he contributes to EdgeRyders, co-runs the nomadic talks program The Thought Menu, and hosts Open Funerals.