There are very few people inhabiting this particular body of work, which is perhaps what sets it apart from his more typical work, as much of it was figurative (his wife was his greatest muse and occupied many of his paintings throughout his career—there are one or two remnants of her here as well). All of the paintings have a formal simplicity—sometimes nearly monochrome—that points to the prosaic moments of upper-middle-class life. The paintings dwarf the viewer, with the largest standing around ten feet high and thirty feet wide.
Can human beings mutate into we are historically used to call “gods” with the help of advanced technology? The Shanghai based artist discusses her interest in the physiology of the human brain, religious narratives, and the aesthetics of gaming and anime in relation to her hyper-stimulating, arcade-like installations.
As part of Haute Ecole d’Art et Design de Genève’s tenth anniversary celebration, the school hosted a two-day conference that analyzed a number of pressing questions and speculations about the present-future.
First things first, though: realism, I was saying. Bourouissa and Courbet share the same principle in which every portrait or representation is, per se, a political act of social inclusion. One can see it from the very beginning of the show, where I’m welcomed by a large-format picture that recalls Diego Velázquez’s ”Equestrian Portrait of the Count-Duke of Olivares.”
Mechanisms brings together twenty artists who critically explore and reimagine the pervasive role of technology in contemporary life. Against the drives toward efficiency and productivity mandated by profit-driven enterprises, the artists in this exhibition throw wrenches into the smooth, organized workings of machines. By misusing tools, sabotaging systems, and thwarting outcomes they question our relationship with the machines that control our bodies and lives, and envision alternative scenarios in which failure, futility, idleness, and breakdown might be reclaimed as opportunities for human agency and creativity. Mechanisms is on view at the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco, from October 12, 2017 to February 24, 2018. A second and expanded version will open at the Vienna Secession in summer of 2018. Here, Gwen L. Allen interviews Wattis Institute director Anthony Huberman about the ideas behind, and planning for, the exhibition.