There are more things
in collaboration with Dorota Kenderová
site specific installation,objects, drawings, manipulated photography, video
Long ago Friedrich Nietszche made a diagnosis of Western civilization as one, which moves toward the last man. Pointing out that in the past century, in which the success of modernist project with its technological apparatus culminates, the shadowy side of progress did not yet show its devastating effect upon geology. We are in similar way reminded of the same thing also by Félix Guattari, who postulates that all crises announce themselves long before they break out. Is the total separation of man from nature the culmination of forthcoming crisis? Is the last man a monumental figure on a high pedestal made of the depleted planet? So high that he cannot reach out for any life apart from himself?
Capitalism of the West is not interested in anything specific, dominant, in a code. It realizes itself on the level of decoding, which means that it does not bring any specific form of knowledge. Rather it is about dis/re-organization of information, with capital in its middle. Racism, sexism and other dual ideologies stem from culturalism, an organization of the world that drives us away from nature ever more. This erosion of the connection between human life and nature imposes a heavy tax that must be paid by “the others” (associated with nature). Closer to nature means further from social and legal status, from enlightenment and from the future as projected by the white man of the West.
Atoms constituting matter connect in a vast variety of combinations similar to letters of the alphabet forming words, sentences or absurd verbal assemblages. Atoms encode information. Basic elements of matter behave like signs, informing each other, choosing, eliminating, and reflecting. Similar to man, they generate and absorb information and knowledge. They code, we code, they count, we count, they speak, and we speak. Thus cognition is the ability to listen and translate languages of things. Nietzsche for instance did not consider cognition (knowledge) to be our ability to understand everything that surrounds us. He did not reason in the intention mind versus matter, in dual looking at the world, which is characteristic of our time. Knowledge creates consensus and models out our view of the “strange outside us”, also of the Earth and of life itself. And as information universally circulates between totalities of all existing things, we cannot claim to be unique as we are convinced to be.
An absurd assemblage, a kind of Verne’s cave of matter and mirrors is the reverse of Plato’s cave. It is a diminished image of the outer world, each beam of light shining upon the complex composition of minerals and rocks is many times reflected back in the cave, receiving and sending out millions of information fibers. The cave here represents reality of the outer world and things, capable to transmit and receive information – each object can become another object’s subject. Verne’s cave is in contradiction with the Anthropocene and ‘Capitalocene’. It represents a vision the Universe has about itself.
Horla is the protagonist of Maupassant’s short novella, a phantom appearing in the shade. He is transparent, yet emitting light. He both does and does not exist. He is both present and absent. He is here and somewhere else. It is a strange spectacular figure through which an infinite number of images flow and are reflected from. Horla stands in front of a mirror, capturing images before the mirror itself can absorb and reflect them. He is a simulacrum. Information flows through him like through a transparent curtain.