Speculations on Anonymous Material

Art’s task changes in a world suffused with generated images. It is imperative to reflect on what are often highly psychologically charged worlds of images, the ways they are reproduced, and represented. Over the last two decades, the relationships between image and text, language and body, body and space, subject and object have changed rapidly.

Art’s brief is no longer to generate unique, original images, but to seek reflection in a de-subjectivized approach to the existing stocks of objects, images and spaces. The order of the day is to understand the world from the vantage point of abstraction and not to abstract from the world.

The element of individual creation takes a back seat and the transfer of images and objects into the world of art becomes irrelevant as such. Today, visual reflection possesses a rhythmic, process-based and serial form. Serial repetition is less a matter of counterpointing sameness and difference and more a matter of weaving a never-ending web of relations.

The Speculations on Anonymous Materials exhibition brought together approaches in international art that reinterpret the ‘Anonymous Materials’ created by rapid and incisive technological transformation. Artists include: Ed Atkins, Simon Denny, Ken Okiishi, Pamela Rosenkranz, Avery Singer, and Ryan Trecartin, among others.

Published retrospectively after the exhibition Speculations on Anonymous Material at Fridericianum, Kassel, 29 September 2013 – 26 January 2014.

English and German text.

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