When Art Meets Society / When Society Meets Art
AQB Project Space / BUDAPEST (Hungary)
12.06.2021 – 18.07.2021
The exhibition is centred around the concept of digitalisation, a phenomenon that has had a tremendous impact on society. The artworks discover ways in which digitalisation has affected our everyday visual perception and interpretation. The global expansion of companies has led to the emergence of a universal visual communication sign system consisting of emojis, memojis, pictograms, logos, primarily used on social media and online platforms. The daily use of digital technology to communicate and connect directly impacts creators and thus the creative process. The use and appropriation of universal symbols have always been characteristic of the arts. Products made iconic by pop art, like today's film gifs, are based on the viewer's prior knowledge.
The artists in the exhibition simplify and abstract these familiar visual symbols, but only to the extent that the analogy remains perceptible throughout. The exhibited works balance representation, representability, and abstraction through pictorial transformation.
The exhibition includes examples of works that directly reflect technological changes either through the way they were produced or through the choice of materials as well as works that seem to follow traditional painting techniques but use familiar digital signs in their motifs. At the same time, more personal, psychologising readings are also present which approach digitalisation, consumption as well as their economic, social and cultural aspects from a human perspective.
It is the encounter of these two poles that gives the exhibition its dynamism and which emphasises the interdependent and reciprocal relationship between art and society. At the centre of the exhibition is painting, the medium whose death has been predicted time and time again, first perhaps upon the discovery of the photograph, but a medium which keeps on refuting claims about its demise.
Curated by Ajna Maj