Biologist E.O.Wilson believes the challenge for 21st century humanity is that “we have palaeolithic emotions, medieval institutions and god-like technologies”. EXPERIMENTA MAKE SENSE reflects on these human challenges by asking the question: how do we, or indeed can we, make sense of today’s world of accelerating change? Through the work of leading Australian and international artists who use, critique and experiment with media and technology, this exhibition invites us to reflect on the fundamental role of our biological senses, in a ‘thinking’, ‘feeling’ and ‘doing’ contemplation of what it is to be human in the digital age.
As we grapple with the rapid pace of change shaped by technological transformation, political uncertainty and global challenges, we recognise that science and technology continue to provide tools for understanding our world. Complex systems theory and ever-larger big-data sets all promise to give us fresh insights into our present day.
EXPERIMENTA MAKE SENSE is grounded in the value of the gallery as a site of contemplation, reflection, and questioning. Through this exhibition, we offer space and time to consider the uses, demands and purpose of our many technological devices, capabilities and lives.
EXPERIMENTA MAKE SENSE presents a program of over 20 leading international and Australian artists who engage directly with these conundrums including Robert Andrew, Ella Barclay, Michele Barker and Anna Munster, Briony Barr, Steve Berrick, Antoinette J. Citizen, Adam Donovan and Katrin Hochschuh, Lauren Edmonds, Matthew Gardiner, Jane Gauntlett, Liz Magic Laser, Jon McCormack, Gail Priest, Scale Free Network: Briony Barr and Gregory Crocetti, Andrew Styan, Judy Watson, and Katarina Zdjelar.
Co-curators: Jonathan Parsons and Lubi Thomas.
Established in 1986 by experimental film and video makers, Experimenta has been instrumental in the development of Australian media art from an underground cultural phenomenon to a celebrated form recognised by major cultural institutions, and growing in scope and sophistication. Melbourne based, with a national and global reach, Experimenta commissions, presents and advocates for Australian artists. Through research, education and development programs, Experimenta deepens engagement with media art and investigates new markets.
Experimenta has presented six editions of the Experimenta International Biennial of Media Art, with 36 artists commissioned to produce new work. The exhibition is the only international biennial to tour Australia, and presents technology-driven art to diverse audiences across the country. Alongside this program, Experimenta has presented countless exhibitions, site‐specific interventions, screenings, performances, education projects, and international exchanges.
Acknowledging the rapidly changing understandings of media art, and the pervasive presence of technology in our lives, in 2017 Experimenta shifted to presenting a triennial exhibition in order to invest more deeply in artist and creative development processes, and to present projects outside of traditional gallery contexts in non-triennial years.
Experimenta Make Sense: International Triennial of Media Art will tour Australia in 2018–20. Please click HERE for more details.