“Jupiter Space” is an exhibition based on Zoë Sofia’s scientific masterpiece “Exterminating Fetuses: Abortion, Disarmament, and the Sexo-Semiotic of Extraterrestrialism” (1984), and prefigures the release of its French translation, the first book of l4bouche – books and digital hub.
Excessive and funny, cruelly actual, this scientific article analyzes the masculinist inventiveness through its most eloquent child, the movie “2001, A Space Odyssey” (Kubrick & C. Clarke) and more widely the culture of mainstream science fiction: culture of the control of bodies, of the negation of the Earth and future generations; the one that hides the question of extinction, yet on our doorstep, under the fascinating mask of the high-fidelity of a vanishing present; that collapses the future into the present, and paralyzes us to think what has really been done.
According to Zoë Sofia, the Jupiter Space is the masculinist mental space produced by the ideology of progress and the rhetoric of scientific, technical, industrial, and military innovation that pervades “the iconography of science fiction, [where] communication, transportation, and information devices are often depicted as tools and spermatic seeds that inseminate the hyperreal terrain.”
On the central wall of the exhibition space Les Limbes, this conceptual matrix — illustrated in 1984 by Zoë Sofia as an appendix to her article —, is reproduced, captioned with the paradigms through which this mental space operates: “Exterminism”, “Excrementalism”, “Extraterrestrialism”.
On the other walls (which also display the author’s drawings), theoretical, iconographic and political ramifications from 1350 to the present day are amplified. Using Sofia’s creative notions that title each wall and compose what she calls the “sexo-semiotics of technology”, the exhibition stages her concepts that act as catalysts for sexual and poetic hypertextual operations. Thus, the regimes of signs that divide the world into penetrable bodies and cannibalized lands on the one hand; inseminating, creative and extractivist spermatic tools on the other are displayed, through the A4 and A3 pages that cover the walls horizontally and vertically, providing an updated reading in the shape of an extended page or a temporarily finished scroll.
The exhibition space is divided as follows:
1) “Logospermatechnos” (the spermatic tools) highlights advertisements, slogans, testimonials that demonstrate the obsession and the marking of phallic radiations over the world, from weaponry to the colonization of Mars.
2) “Cannibaleyes” reveals the cannibalistic eyes of science. From Ulrike Meinhof’s brain to the womb of women, this gaze inherited from the Enlightenment is made explicit: the one that places itself off-world, objectifies, mines and exhausts its subjects of study and its sources.
3) In the next room, the wall “Collapsed future” increases the grammatical time of the “collapsed future” coined by Sofia. The “slow cancellation of the future” is demonstrated through memes and real facts that are sometimes difficult to differentiate, highlighting our fungible present, its absurdities, its past simulations that haunt a fading horizon. Facing it, supreme testimony of the passion of our time for the interpretation and the repetition of signs, a line of conspirational patterns is displayed, equation of the established and fantasized powers.
4) Finally, illuminated by a radioactive yellow, the last piece entitled “Xenophilia”, a word added by l4bouche to Sofia’s glossary, initiates a network of “guerrillères” agentivities from the point of view of the alien, this radical alterity banished from the Espace Jupiter that equips itself with its monstrosity to strike back.
Therefore, in the exhibition gravitate, in the middle of sadistic children, missiles, penetrable brains and excremental inventions, evidences against the great technological narrative that was written with and against the bodies. And beside its critique, a community committed to its brutal dismantling takes shape.
Research in movement made visible, Jupiter Space defends an exploratory method without preconceived finality, nor hierarchy regarding the gathered objects. Theoretical quotations mingle with anonymous testimonies, advertising images, newspaper articles, Internet memes, film extracts; signs and voices meet, clash, contradict each other: they build and reveal implacable logics, others more aberrant. Prospective filiations are at work.
With Zoë Sofia, Jane Caputi, Mark Fisher, Ulrike Meinhof, Sadie Plant, Ingeborg Bachmann, Zohra Drif, St. Lucy of Syracuse, Valerie Solanas, Margaret Thatcher, Jehovah’s Witnesses, VNS Matrix, Elon Musk, the Posadists, Chris Kraus, and many more.
List of works:
1) “Exterminating Fetuses: Abortion, Disarmament, and the Sexo-Semiotic of Extraterrestrialism”, scientific article, Zoë Sofia, 1984
2) “Extinction Sux”, Zoë Sofia, series of drawings, 1984
3) “Past Technodrama to the Future”, l4bouche via Zoë Sofia, Jane Caputi, Mark Fisher, Ulrike Meinhof, Sadie Plant, Ingeborg Bachmann, Zohra Drif, St. Lucy of Syracuse, Valerie Solanas, Margaret Thatcher, Jehovah’s Witnesses, VNS Matrix, Elon Musk, the Posadists, Chris Kraus, Marguerite D., Laboria Cuboniks, Alexandra Kollontaï, Helen Zahavi, Elsa Dorlin, Ridley Scott, Curzio Malaparte, le Commissariat général à la famille, Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, Françoise Vergès, Choir of China’s Internet censorship agency, Helen Caldicott, Marshall McLuhan, Monique Wittig, the Safe Society for the Advancement of Fission Energy, Planned Parenthood, Northrop, Rockwell International, Mark Zuckerberg, Fredric Jameson, Hustler Magazine, Amanda Third, Jeanne de Montbaston, John Barlow, the 4chan community, the Internet meme community, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, 131 A4 sheets, 13 A3 sheets, 1 90×150 sheet, 7 5inches videos, 2021
about l4bouche: l4bouche develops a new language between art and research to investigate the brutal realities born from late capitalism. They do books, exhibitions, and curate a digital platform. Founded in 2020 by artist Cindy Coutant and writer Estelle Benazet Heugenhauser.