Our physical bodies are significantly influenced by new technologies – from facial scans to holograms, from body hacking to genetic manipulation. The human being seems completely controllable by artificial intelligence, the boundaries between the real and the artificial, the individual and the collective thereby become blurred. Technological progress is always accompanied by curiosity, speculation, even fear for the future: any breakthrough in technology is a challenge for humanity. Could the future world be ruined by losing control of technology today? In which direction should we develop? Is a review of the past helpful? To gain a new orientation, can we look at and investigate the beginnings of the digital era in order to understand the development we have made thus far?
“Body Search I” shows art works from the beginning of the digital age, art that still treats each individual and their body centrally and physically. Does art have the potential to make our present-day shine in a new light? Is there still a utopia there that shows a direction from which we can look at our social whole in a different and new way? Today, the individual plays a role only as part of a larger whole and through our attachment to technology, man appears only virtually. Can a new focus on the individual body, an individual person, be enlightening?
The exhibition presents photographs, drawings and video installations by Chinese and German artists, which can be readily understood. They deal with attributions, longings, deviations and new forms of the physical. Are they showing us ways in which a look back might be a way forward to a new identity in the posthuman world?
The exhibition stages the view back from the future and invites a dialogue of times and perspectives.
Gao Yi is current scholarship holder of the “Curator Scholarship” of the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony at the Leipzig Museum of Contemporary Art (GfZK).