ECHOES OF A FAR VIBRATION: MORE THAN HUMANS

The Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and TBA21 (Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary Art) have just opened the exhibition "More than humans" that will be open to the public until December 1st.

This exhibition brings together the work of Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster and Tomás Saraceno, under the curating of Stefanie Hessler, in the third project of collaboration between both institutions so far. With these cooperation proposals, the Thyssen Museum expands its connection with contemporary art and explores ways to generate a dialogue between both collections.

Tomás Saraceno, “How to catch the universe in a spider web?”, 2018

Hessler has always been interested in interdisciplinary creative processes and the desire to share the work of artists and researchers who feed on different sources. This has led her to manage projects where art coexists with other disciplines to enrich a shared message that allows addressing issues from different perspectives. In this exhibition, the viewer is invited to ask questions about topics related to technology, artificial intelligence or the power of the unknown. The coexistence of the work of these two artists, apparently so disparate, articulates through the idea of vibration: the one that causes the sound or movement of objects in space, and the one that perceives a receiver, as a passive listener or as a being connected to a sensor network.

Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, “Opera (QM.15)”, 2016. Video-intallation. Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary Collection. Photo: Andrea Rossetti

The strange link that originates between these works requires an interpretive effort to understand the subtlety of the approach, but everything makes sense in this space inhabited by works of art and waiting to receive visitors to unravel those mysteries.

The recent work of Tomás Saraceno has focused on investigating the development of spiders, which has led him to collaborate with geologists and entomologists to examine the behaviour of these arthropods and study their architectures. In the exhibition, one of his latest work "How to catch the universe in a spider web?", a large installation that mimics the networks that weave arachnids, will be present. With these delicate structures, we realise the subtlety of the movement of the air, of the soft tensions that occur with each vibration.

Tomás Saraceno, “Hybrid semi-social solitary Instrument HD 74874” built by: a triplet of Cyrtophora citricola - four weeks and a solo Agelena labyrinthica - one week, 2019

For his part, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster enters the scene with a piece from his latest project, in which he recovers famous characters thanks to the support of technology. In “Opera (QM.15)”, the artist himself plays the role of the soprano María Callas thanks to a holographic illusion. Synchronising his movements with the sound, when reproducing some of the most famous arias that the singer interpreted, he creates a spooky effect that makes its way between the rooms of the museum. Here, the vibrations of the voice will be those that move the threads of the cobwebs, revealing the relationship between these works.

 

Thirteen years have passed since its beginnings, and in all this time the Video Art Festival PROYECTOR has grown and consolidated its position as an essential event in this discipline. Since its inception, the initiative has tried to give visibility to a discipline that has always been relegated to the background in the usual exhibition circuits. Although video creation is not new, since it emerged by its own in the 60s of last century, the way to get to know it and enjoy it has not always been easy. On many occasions, the exhibitions only included a few isolated pieces within the main route, as if the video was the anecdotal contribution to the whole. However, our daily lives are invaded by moving images, and there is a paradox that video art, despite being a format of artistic expression very much in tune with the habits of today's society, remains a minority discipline

Frame from “Hel City”, by Gregorio Méndez Sáez, 2019

To some extent, PROYECTOR was born to reverse this situation, to value video as a creative format and to offer a wide, itinerant space to host a multitude of proposals, coming from inside and outside our borders. In this time, the growth of the festival has led it to travel the world, but also, to be a benchmark that each year arouses more interest. In the open call to receive proposals, they reach almost half a thousand, and a hundred works selected by the jury are a representative sample of different ways of understanding video creation, with pieces mainly from Europe, Latin America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

In turn, PROYECTOR wants to be more than a video showcase and offers a large program with talks, workshops, masterclasses, meetings with artists, visits and concerts. A complete experience that always has the moving image as a backdrop.

El Instante Francisco Ruiz de Infante. El bosque que se mueve (errores de medida)

In this evolution, another circumstance stands out: video is a creative format that has its own codes, but it is also one of the disciplines most open to artistic hybridization and the widening of uses. The video may, therefore, be the genuine idea of an author who conceives an autonomous project to be carried out in this format, but it can also be the complementary result of an action or the documentary record of a previous performance being recorded to guarantee its survival. The versatility of the moving image and the potential that it has acquired in recent years allows us today to speak of numerous branches of art that focus on the fusion of languages and the integration of techniques and methodologies from other sectors, and in many of them, the video is still a cornerstone. So it is with technological art, interactive sound art, performance recording, the transformation from big data to image, artificial intelligence, and a long etcetera. Precisely for this reason, PROYECTOR offers a panoramic vision of this reality, with an extremely interesting program that plays with the variety and wealth of proposals.

Frame from “Herdança”, by Thiago Rocha Pitta, 2007

The 2020 edition will run from September 9th to 20th. As usual, the program displays in various venues throughout the city of Madrid, each of which will house a small section of the activities. This year the festival will count with the collaboration of the Casa Árabe, White Lab, Cruce, El Instante Fundación, ¡ésta es una PLAZA!, Extensión AVAM (Matadero Madrid), Institut Français de Madrid, Medialab Prado, Quinta del Sordo, Sala Alcalá 31, Sala El Águila, Secuencia de Inútiles and White Lab, in addition to the collaboration of the INELCOM Collection and the video art collection of Teresa Sapey.

The festival is also the ideal place to articulate the cultural fabric, since it involves numerous professionals in the sector, from curators to creators, from centres managers to critics and teachers. The 2020 program also has the collaboration of the FUSO Festival and the Museo Reina Sofía, which are providing some of their pieces for the exhibition.

In short, an appointment that lovers of contemporary art should not miss and that promises many novelties in this 13th edition.