Cell Project Space presents a solo project by Berlin based, Dutch artist, Anne de Vries. His new work deals with varying notions of ‘the individual’ inside mass collectivity of ‘pluralist culture’ bringing into question an evolving ideology of design and architecture in the public sphere. For this project de Vries unfolds an integration of physical and virtual elements from the synthetic environment of large-scale music events that reveal an environment that hinges on an uninterrupted flow of sound, image, light and digital information, to the intimate connected world of small mobile devices, headsets and the global portals of the Internet. Both are positioned to develop fictional power structures that engineer mass ecstatic experience or opportunities to escape.
Inside the first gallery De Vries pulls together the human psyche by exploding a head into a variety of architectural structures and representations alongside the technology we use to feed thought and communication. Live-streamed screens of global locations take us to far away places, from the congested streets of Times Square, New York City, to a tranquil bird watch in the South American jungle. Time zones are switched to accommodate the viewer’s desire. Each architectural make-shift shelter harbours conversations between a mediator, commissioned by Vries, to investigate and interview various representatives from specific unrelated global institutions ranging from monasteries, shelters, detention centres, swingers clubs and meditation centres. Via a series of discussions and questioning, focusing on the philosophy and mission of each institution, the audio reveals a simulation of codes and rules, which seem to merge into one. Technology takes an anthropomorphic form and the audio gives shape to distinct places and states of mind that can potentially be entered and fade into each other. The caller’s phrases and vocabulary simulate into fragmented codes of artificial intelligence where humans become part of the automated tools they use.
In the back space the apolitical context of mass audiences and a ‘now’ generation of online users are represented in Critical Mass: Pure Immanence referring to the human condition that collectively engages, either physically or virtually with the provisional ‘high-octane’ language and experience of an electro super club. De Vries sites this condition alongside a psychological state, which is more akin to emphatic, sensory experience or a heightened subconscious.
Submission is an attempt to give form and purpose to our hyper connected world and reveals it as information driven reality where digital technologies are embedded in everyday life and feed a human desire to surpass the limitations of body and mind, where boundaries of accessibility and freedom can also question the realm of personal privacy and control.
Contribution by Marialuisa Pastò.
Anne de Vries - Submission
Cell Project Space, November 27 - January 24