- 💙 Kaiserstraße 32, 1070 Vienna
- 💚 Livia Klein & Kai Philip Trausenegger
- 🖤 Groupshow
- 💜 Kai Philip Trausenegger
- 💛 Jorit Aust
SPECULATIVE SPECULUM is a reflection on the topic of action without aim. A decision to start a process without actually knowing anything better, offering a swirling look into a foggy crystal ball, engulfing the viewer with misleading prophetic rubble and sequences of bad dreams that appear devoid of time and space. Based on the presumption that it is impossible to overcome the current system of capitalism, the exhibition completely dismisses the logical reality and stages a fictional revolution, driving the political remains into a legible narrative. Scientific analysis, pseudo-politics, esoterics, conspiracy theories, and Live Action Roleplay are shamelessly intertwined and thrown together as actors on a stage. The setting takes place in this liminal moment shortly after the fall of an old system – rooted in the disorientation and newfound potency of infinite possibilities immediately following. The surrounding scenery is purposefully misinterpreted, recontextualized and shaped to fit our story, with the speculum serving as a magical apparatus to examine an ever-changing body investigating its own obscure orifices. “It is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism” states the popular quote by political theorist Fredric Jameson. But why is it so hard to imagine an alternate reality to capitalism? Alternative media and culture appear to be filled with its constant criticism and still, it seems that the last determined counterproject died with the fall of the iron curtain. The very idea of a concrete utopia seems like the naïve imaginations of the past, residing on the level of early illustrations equating the promised land with flying cars. While postmodernism still reigns un-defied, either an end of history is announced or nostalgic hauntology mourns our lost futures. “The future is cancelled”, writes the widely popular theorist Mark Fisher, and despite the debatable content of this universal declaration there seems to be prevailing exhaustion with the inescapability of our current situation. Does every attempt to criticize the system feed into the very system itself? Is cultural criticism of capitalism simply a performative act as a part of the never-ending loop? The slow realization of impotence turns frustration into tangible matters that seem easier to tackle than a faceless entity. A system more resilient than a cockroach on the run from the raised slipper – but what if we just mentally ignore the bug? If we start stubbornly imagining the menace not to be here? SPECULATIVE SPECULUM serves as a machine like a sandbox within an operating system. Programs are run and tested, viruses checked, and potentially harmful code is observed behind a thick layer of security glass. The performance was strictly evaluated, extrapolated, and subsequently turned into the performative. An anthology of fragments that create a political play without ever utilizing politics. A simple act for the sake of acting in the jester’s new court. Within the exhibition works by Isabelle Andriessen, Andreas Werner, Chin Tsao, Tim Enthoven, Kai Philip Trausenegger and the artist collective adO/Aptive are shown.
Kai Philip Trausenegger