The show’s title holds at least two meanings. Firstly, it references the historical myth according to which, until the travels of Christopher Columbus, Europeans believed the Earth was disc-shaped. While in fact mediaeval scholars knew the Earth to be spherical, this oft-repeated cliché has taken hold in the collective imagination, spawning a false vision of an ignorant past. Secondly, in the twenty-first century, the phrase the world is flat has acquired new meaning. It has come to denote a globe levelled by the dominance of neoliberalism, the mobility of capital, and the rise of the Internet, a global information-distribution network that promised universal access to knowledge and equal opportunities for a better life. This promise has not been fulfilled, and now capital and power wield information technologies as tools of unprecedented scale.

The excess of information, data, and signals that surround us mean that although we know more and more about the world, it is increasingly difficult to understand. The age of information has turned into an age of disruptions. The resulting sense of confusion fuels the rise of conspiracy and magical thinking, as people search for simple analogies, connections, and solutions for overly complex issues. In a flat world founded on faith in constant scientific and technological progress, we are increasingly searching for esoteric, mystical knowledge and alternative tools to help us create meaning.

All these come together in an exhibition that shows the interconnections between communication, cartography, and the history of science. It confronts different ways of exploring reality, examining how they clash, but also how they weave and complement each other. The artists on display also challenge the limits and constructs of scientific truth: they look at maps, models, and theories that claim to be objective, but are in fact shaped by systems of power. Though the artworks featured in this exhibition do not resemble didactic exhibits, they serve as tools to navigate among oppositions, questions, and doubts.

 

 

Artists: Micol Assaël, András Cséfalvay, Cian Dayrit, João Maria Gusmão & Pedro Paiva, Jessika Khazrik, Anne-Mie van Kerckhoven, Szymon Kobylarz, Carolyn Lazard, Diana Lelonek, Mark Lombardi, Katja Novitskova, Zuzanna Piekoszewska, Luiza Prado de O. Martins, Tabita Rezaire, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Michael Stevenson, Superstudio, Thomas Thwaites, Suzanne Treister, Jakub Woynarowski, Lu Yang. 

 

 



The Earth Is Flat Again


from 24 Sep 2021 to 16 Jan 2022
in Muzeum Sztuki, Łódź, Polen.


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