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Ismael de Anda III and Eugene Ahn’s collaborative exhibition “Revolution Generators” opens at panke.gallery, Berlin, investigating territorialization at the U.S. and Mexican border, where Anda was raised, and the once divided German capital. 25 digital collages, printed on aluminium, capture real and fictional landscapes and are paired with projections and AR sculptural forms. A recurring motif are (hostile) metal turnstiles lifted from U.S. border crossings and cast into the sky as colourful satellites.

“The physical still has power. Let’s at least get the power of digital in our own hands, for us to be able to tell that story, rather than leave it up to museums to start representing things digitally, and then own that narrative.”
– Looty’s Chidirim Nwaubani, calling for the digital repatriation of cultural plunder from major museums. Until institutions admit guilt and return the ill-gotten “spoils of war” that line Egyptian and African museum wings in the Global North, he and collaborator Ahmed Abokor are defiantly 3D scanning artifacts (and sharing them in AR) for their rightful inheritors.

Curated by Mitra Fakhrashrafi, “shadow work,” the flagship exhibition of the 11th edition of Vector Festival, opens in Toronto. Artists including Imogen Clendinning, Allan Pichardo, and Swarm contribute works probing tensions between rigid classification and lived experience. In Portals, Not Homes (2023, image), for example, Zoe Osborne and the Tamil Archive Project (Krish Dineshkumar, Nithursan Elamuhilan, Vasuki Shanmuganathan) turn childhood memories of shopping for imported goods into an immersive experience.

New York City’s (now nomadic) Postmasters Gallery premieres Damjanski’s Napster (2023) at the artisanal bed and mattress showroom Charles P. Rogers. The venue is appropriate: The iPhone app scans the environment for comfy nap locations by placing a 3D model of Damjanski sleeping. Seeding AR snoozes is on brand for the Yugoslavian prankster and self-described ‘artist living in a browser:’ His 2019 app Bye Bye Camera erased people from photos, heralding the post-human era of AI.

“If Apple’s vision wins out, the fear is that we’ll all sink into our cyberpunk home theater goggles, consuming content as the world burns.”
LA Times tech columnist Brian Merchant, channelling media scholar David Karpf’s critique of Apple’s “anti-metaverse,” where people disappear into a “totally immersive computer on their face”—alone. “If the world keeps getting worse,” Karpf says, “this will eventually have a lot of appeal.”

“Introducing iPhone, on your face,” quips ‘Famous New Media Artist’ Jeremy Bailey about the reveal of Apple’s Vision Pro. Bailey anticipated the company’s mixed-reality goggles after coming across a 2015 patent (image), while patenting (whimsical) AR interfaces of his own. “Current AR and VR patents,” Bailey wrote in 2016, “are hilariously broad and forecast a future where culture itself belongs to the world’s largest tech companies.” The new Apple face computer still gets a thumbs-up (“this is incredible”).

“We may one day possess tools that keep us plugged in all the time, yet trick us into believing we’re not. The beauty of these ugly goggles is that they show what’s really going on.”
– Tech reporter Molly Roberts, on Apple’s newly announced Vision Pro mixed-reality goggles. “We will be able to be not present while also being present—to fail to pay full attention to what’s around us without technically having to look away from it,” Roberts writes. “Welcome to the future.” [quote edited]

Carla Gannis’ solo exhibition “wwwunderkammer” opens at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art (HICA) in Charleston (US), aiming to decolonize the wunderkammer and, by extension, the museum. A real-world manifestation of her ongoing social VR project (2019–), the show invites visitors to explore a series of ‘chambers,’ each focusing on a different aspect of life in the internet age. In line with the American transmedia artist’s penchant for illusionism, the gallery uses AR to obfuscate what’s real and what’s not.

Copenhagen Contemporary opens “Yet, It Moves!,” a city-wide exhibition of art-science encounters that explore the universe’s only constant: movement. Eleven artists including Cecilia Bengolea, Ryoji Ikeda, Black Quantum Futurism, Jakob Kudsk Steensen (image: Tongues of Verglas, 2023), and Jenna Sutela worked with leading researchers through Arts at CERN, ModLab, DARK, and the IMC to express phenomena like black holes, star formation, and gravitational waves as 3D animations, VR, AR, sound, and immersive installations.

Christiane Paul
Digital Art (World of Art)
The forth edition of the digital art curator’s acclaimed 2003 survey includes recent developments like AI, augmented and mixed realities, and NFTs (and features pioneer Caudia Hart on the cover).

“Refigured,” a group exhibition that collapses “today’s material and virtual realms,” opens at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City. Curator Christiane Paul brings together Morehshin Allahyari, American Artist, Zach Blas & Jemima Wyman, Auriea Harvey (image: SITE1, 2023), and Rachel Rossin—artists engaged in “refiguring” material forms and bodies—to showcase sculptures that are “simultaneously physical and virtual,” and videos and animations that “extend beyond the screen and into the gallery.”

“The future’s gonna be weirder than anyone can imagine,” Turkish AI artist Memo Akten writes about the effect TikTok’s newly released Teenage Filter has on people. “It makes you look young,” he demonstrates in an uncanny reaction video, “and now TikTok is full of middle-aged folks trying come to terms with this, trying to understand where their life went.” Facing your younger self can be “quite emotional,” says Akten and provides dozens of examples in a (now viral) Twitter thread.

After its recent site-specific debut at Tieranatomisches Theater, Berlin, the online component of Rachel Rossin’s transmedia narrative THE MAW OF (2022) launches on Artport, the Whitney Museum’s portal for internet art. Co-commissioned by Berlin’s KW Institute, the Web and AR experience follows a ghostly female figure navigating a landscape of cyborgian codes and prosthetic symbolism that is directly inspired by Rossin’s research into brain-computer interfaces.

Created for “Digital Self,” a group exhibition at Montréal’s Jano Lapin Gallery, ‘Famous New Media Artist’ Jeremy Bailey debuts Internet Artist (2022), another AR sculpture and NFT that hijacks art history (see here, here). An “update” to Nam June Paik’s TV Buddha (1974), Bailey—not Paik’s buddha—is shown watching themselves. Other artists co-curators Samuel Arsenault-Brassard and Anne Jano included are Chris Coleman, Francoise Gamma, Mario Klingemann, and Martina Menegon.

“Future Bodies,” a group exhibition examining corporeality and femininity in the digital age, opens in Amsterdam. Curator Anne de Jong brings together eight artists including Salomé Chatriot, Auriea Harvey (image: Pelops I, 2022), Lynn Hershman Leeson, Cassie McQuater, and Addie Wagenknecht, presenting positions from different generations. “New media has proven to be a feminist tool for artists to push the boundaries of identity, body, and space,” writes de Jong.

Ana Prvački’s Apis Gropius, a new site-specific species of bee, takes over the atrium of Berlin’s Gropius Bau. An AR experience hatched in collaboration with NEEEU during the museum’s residency program, the project draws on Prvački’s long-standing interest in bees, our dependence on them, and the venue’s history in taxonomical research. The goal: playfully explore “the manifold ways in which institutions and nature intersect and co-evolve.”

Igor Štromajer’s hybrid installation ƒ(x)=ax³+bx²+cx+d*, realised together with German art historian and curator Sakrowski, opens at the Aksioma project space in Ljubljana. The titular cubic function is expressed in a 1 m³ concrete cube balancing on one of its vertices, as did the cube in the iconic GIF animation the Slovenian net artist (also known as intima) created in 1996. Through AR, the two can exist together (image), traversing materiality, technologies, and time.

“Outside In,” a web-based, site-specific AR exhibition by Manuel Rossner and Damjanski opens near /rosa, panke.gallery and Zentrum für Netzkunst’s Berlin project space. Realized on Panke’s OpenAR.art platform, the two sculptures—Rossner’s Spatial Painting (image) and Damjanski’s Inside: Spatial Painting—stand in dialogue, where the latter takes visitors into the former—“a perspective that wouldn’t have been possible with AR technology.”

17 post-photography artists including Banz & Bowinkel, Arno Beck, Susan Morris, and Anna Ridler reflect on using new digital imaging processes such as photogrammetry, AR, 3D scanning, and AI
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