Mud Muses

A Rant about Technology

Taking its title from an installation by Robert Rauschenberg and an essay by science fiction writer Ursula K. Le Guin, the catalogue Mud Muses considers how the world over the last half century has been recreated in the image of technology.

…How do we understand the relationship between life and technology in a time when they seem to be completely merged?… Meet 19 artists and artists groups who manipulate and play with (gender)codes, flip subjectivities, hook up with other intelligences and short circuit the promises of technology…

In the 1960s the aim was to integrate technology with everyday life: in 2019 that unification seems realised and complete. Perhaps it will be by travelling through history and the imagination that we can trace the differences between life, art, and technology? In Robert Rauschenberg’s fifty-year-old artwork ‘Mud Muse’ (1968–1971) sonic vibrations create random bubbles in a large, open, vat filled with synthetic sludge. Here our encounter with technology becomes both sticky and confusing. What a Mud Muse actually is remains uncertain, but the installation makes one thing clear: technology is a notion that creates time and space and thus influences our sense of reality.’ – Text from Moderna Museet exhibition information.

Artists and artists groups featured include: Ian Cheng; CUSS Group; Sidsel Meineche Hansen and Cultural Capital Cooperative; Charlotte Johannesson; Kooperative für Darstellungspolitik; Lucy Siyao Liu; Anna Lundh; Antônio Brasil Marubo, Paulino Joaquim Marubo and Armando Mariano Marubo; The Otolith Group; Branko Petrović, research presented by Nikola Bojić; Primer; Robert Rauschenberg; Anna Sjödahl; Soda_Jerk with VNS Matrix; Jenna Sutela; Suzanne Treister; Nomeda and Gediminas Urbonas; Varv Varv; Vision Exchange Workshop with Nalini Malani and Akbar Padamsee.

Accompanies the exhibition ‘Mud Muses: A Rant About Technology’, 12 Oct 2019 – 12 Jan 2020, Moderna Museet, Stockholm.

English and Swedish text.

Co-published with Moderna Museet

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