The Museum für Kommunikation in Frankfurt am Main has developed an exhibition which highlights the technological utopias of the past and present. It particularly reflects on digitalisation and the social changes it has engendered, featuring selected works by internationally renowned artists like Zach Blas, Camille Henrot, Nestor Pestana, Suzanne Treister and Pinar Yoldas, alongside objects of technological history. Visitors embark on a visual journey that introduces them to the technological models of the future, developed by the creative visionaries of the 19th century. Some of these utopias have become established models of everyday life, while others, though entertaining, clearly overshot their mark.
The artworks offer individual points of access to scientific history and provide alternative perspectives on technological innovations. In the piece by Pinar Yoldas, for example, visitors are given opportunities to consider the advantages (and disadvantages) of human optimisation. Entitled “Designer Babies” (2013-2016), her work reflects both the fascination and horror evoked by such themes as human-machine hybridisation, cyborgs and body extensions. Camille Henrot’s video “Grosse Fatigue” (2013), awarded the Silver Lion at the Venice Biennale, illustrates different notions regarding the creation of the universe and interweaves primitive mythology with chaos theory and other scientific concepts. And the newly created work “Icosahedron” (2019) by Zach Blas presents an artificial intelligence encapsulated within a crystal ball.
Artistic directors: Katja Weber, reflekt and Yvonne Zindel
Artists: Zach Blas, ecoLogicStudio, Alex Haw, Camille Henrot, Antonia Hirsch, Nestor Pestana, Suzanne Treister, Pinar Yoldas