Metahaven: Information Skies
7 October - 3 December 2016
Public preview: Thursday, 6 October 2016, 6-9pm
Withdrawn into the forest, a young couple imagine themselves to be living a life of great danger; as warriors, or dragons.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.
Metahaven: Information Skies is the first presentation in India by the Dutch art and design studio Metahaven. Opening concurrently at Auto Italia in London, it is also the collective's first solo exhibition in the UK.
Using both live footage and animation, Metahaven's 2016 film project Information Skies weaves new realities, informed by virtual reality (VR). Through a dramatisation of this experiential technology, concepts of authenticity and experience are positioned as poetic provocations. How might we understand ‘truth' and ‘law' in a world of infinitely self-producing belief systems?
Metahaven's previous film installation The Sprawl (Propaganda About Propaganda) addresses the same subject matter but through the documentary form. In Information Skies, the fictionalised perspective heralds a new cinematic topography, creating fragmented territories of images and suggestions, and building a worldview that is at once attractive and terrifying.
Information Skies was commissioned for the 11th Gwangju Biennale. Its language is Hungarian, with subtitles in Hindi, Korean, and English.
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.
Mumbai Art Room is grateful to Manmohan Shetty and Adlabs Entertainment for their invaluable support in making this exhibition possible. Many thanks to Nandini Patodia for the Hindi translation.