future past – past future
About the curator
Sandra Naumann is a curator and media historian based in Berlin. She has curated programs for transmediale, CTM, Werkleitz, sound:frame, Shift, Elektra and others. As researcher she has been working on projects like See this Sound
and aux écoutes des images. She studied Communication and Media Studies, Art History and German Literature at the University of Leipzig and the University of Manchester.
ArtUp!, produced its first exhibition Neighbourhood X.0
(2012) in Ankara, followed by a series of exhibitions in Plovdiv, Russe, Sofia and Varna under the title PARABOLE
(2013) and most recently the current exhibition Home/s
(2013) in Athens. Now ArtUP! is collaborating with Bulgarian, Greek and Turkish media artists to produce an exhibition that will be part of the nexttransmediale
festival for art and digital culture in Berlin. Curated by Sandra Naumann, the new group show entitledfuture past – past future
will be hosted in SUPERMARKT
from 25 January to 2 February 2014.
Did the future look better in the past? Today, has the future already turned into the past? Or is it perhaps that nowadays the past seems almost blissful compared to the present in which we actually live? What concepts of the future exist in times of social, economic and political crises, in times of increasing poverty, corruption and mistrust of the democratic process? Do visions of a better future exist at all? Or have we already caught up with our blooming future visions and dumped them in the dustbin of history?
The title of the exhibition refers to the storyline of “Days of Future Past” from the 1980s comic series “The Uncanny X –Men”. It tells the story of a dystopian future in 2013, in which the total collapse of the world can only be averted by a journey into the past. In fact, it turns out that this possible future cannot simply be deleted, it can only be replaced by a different future.
future past – past future not only asks about the possible alternative future scenarios, but also about the relationship between the past, present and future in Bulgaria, Greece and Turkey. To what extent do current and historical events play a role in the visions of the future in this inextricably interwoven region? How do these countries’ respective historical identities and individual stories of their own history, shape the ideas of a possible tomorrow? What conflicts exist between those who are looking for the future in the eternal yesterday and those who want to overturn the norms of tradition?
future past – past future therefore also questions the power of old and new media. The statement “the revolution has been televised” could be applied not only to the Arab Spring, but also to the mass demonstrations in Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey captured by countless mobile phone and television cameras and broadcast to the world. But what is the reality behind the images disseminated by the mass media? How do these images find their way into an artistic involvement with the protest movements? How is the expression of public protest reflected in the media arts? What methodologies of resistance have been developed in media arts? How is the battle waged for media coverage, for dominance in the social networks and government censorship?
These are the questions that the call for works posed to artists from Bulgaria, Greece and Turkey. Their artistic works show the diversity of the approaches in response to these questions. The works selected for the exhibition range from highly personal reflections on the latest protests to activist interventions by the artists themselves, from explorations of old and new political slogans and economic aspirations to the deconstructions of the mechanisms of capitalism and the promises of social networks. The artists portray the tension between past and future poetically or abstractly, pugnaciously or playfully, ironically or analytically, looking back to the past or ahead to the future. But all are full of curiosity about what future might hold.
Bill Balaskas: Re: Evolution
Egemen Demirci: Horizons
Şirin Bahar Demirel: Living with Leviathan
George Drivas: Sequence Error
The Erasers: Feedback for Atlas – An accident waiting to happen
Pravdoliub Ivanov: Black Balloons
Marinos Koutsomichalis, Afroditi Psarra, Maria Varela: Oiko-nomic Threads
Nur Balkır Kuru: ArTM
NAGLEDNA: Bright Future in the Year of our Discontent
Kamen Stoyanov: Future Idea
Can Sungu, Malve Lippmann: And we have arrived
Borjana Ventzislavova: High Blue Mountains, Rivers and Golden Plains
Location and dates