Historical determinism asserts that every action in the present determines a small or large change in the future. Once that action has taken place, nothing in the future can be the same as it was before that action took place. This is also the case when entering 180 The Strand in London and leaving after a journey studded with an exceptional selection of video works that lead the visitor along a trail of images, at once radical and absolute. It is a journey through memory of some of the most iconic works produced in recent years, which curator Massimiliano Gioni in collaboration with The New Museum, The X Store and Vinyl Factory has selected to sum up the planning of the New York museum: from Camille Henrot to Oliver Laric, from Pipilotti Rist to Ed Atkins, from Wu Tsang to Ryan Trecartin and again Anri Sala, Wong Ping, Lili Reyanud-Dewar, Daria Martin, Cally Spooner, Laure Prouvost, Mounira Al Sohl, John Akomfrah, Maha Maamoun, Jonathas de Andrade, Hassan Khan, Ragnar Kjartansson, Cheng Ran, Kahil Joseph. These works, thanks to a skillfully orchestrated ephemeral architecture, lead the visitor into a suspended limbo of space and time, between awareness and alteration, between passage and permanence.
Jonathas de Andrade, O peixe [The Fish], 2016 (still). Courtesy Alexander and Bonin, New York, and Galeria Vermelho, São Paulo
John Akomfrah, Vertigo Sea, 2015. Courtesy Smoking Dogs Films and Lisson Gallery. Photo: Maris Hutchinson / EPW Studio
Kahlil Joseph, Fly Paper, 2017 (still). HD video installation, sound. Courtesy the artist, photo by Jack Hems
Lili Reynaud-Dewar, TEETH, GUMS, MACHINE, FUTURE, SOCIETY (One Body, Two Souls), 2017 (still). Courtesy the artist and CLEARING, New York/Brussels
Oliver Laric, Untitled, 2014–15 (still). Courtesy the artist and Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Can we have a memory of the future? If future time allows us to look beyond the confines of the present, speculations of the future represent the memory from which we can reconfigure the identity of our own past. It is the same short circuit as in a time machine that leads us to forget the past and memorize the future, leaving the door of Surrey Street, only a few hundred meters away.
Titled We don’t need another hero, the 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art is a conversation with artists and contributors who think and act beyond art as they confront the incessant anxieties perpetuated by a willful disregard for complex subjectivities.
New Museum, New York. The much anticipated New Museum Triennial, titled this year ’Songs for Sabotage’, opened in February presenting the works of twenty-six artists from nineteen countries, some of which are showing for the first time in an institution.