Vacations in the Subconscious
100 years – The Manifesto of Surrealism by André Breton.
The exhibition focus at The New Museum for Networked Art during 2023 is dedicated to the 100th return of the launch of André Breton’s Manifesto of Surrealism, an art and literary movement initiated in 1924 taking fundamental influence on contemporary art and the perception of art, culture and daily life, in general.
The title of the exhibition project “Vacations in the Subconscious” is referring to the influence of Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis in the arts and philosophy of the 20th century explaining people’s behaviors/acting directed from the Subconscious.
Surrealism was one of several art expressions developing simultaneously in the beginning of 20th century at a historical turning point – facing the industrialization, the horrors of World War I and the desire of people one hundred years ago for a kind of counter movement which was not dominated/ directed by mind. 100 years later these days, there is a similar turning point – think of the global climate change, the digitalization, the uprising wars in many parts of the world, this not just the Russian War against Ukraine, generating again the need for counter realities – a more spiritual world.
The exhibition is not intending to initiate a kind of revival of Surrealism, it would be not necessary, because the Surrealist ideas propagating new kinds of freedom via imaginary worlds, became the genetic code of contemporary art and a variety of expressions in most different manifestations in art, culture, philosophy, literature, language and, commercially, in advertising, for instance, but – explore how contemporary artists of the 21st century working with a medium which did not exist yet during the classical Surrealist era (ending in the sixties of past century) – e.g. (digital) video art offering new ways of representing reality/diverse realities, are influenced by the ideas/ideology/utopias/spirit/ imagery of Surrealism and the visual and substantive clichés Surrealism was generating.
Exhibiting the Surrealist Project is the invitation to the visitor/viewer of art to dive deeply to the bottom of one’s soul via moving images and recognize the difference between videoart, cinema and video as an advertising medium, as well.
Digital video is representing quite a young medium starting only about 20 years ago, offering its user/creator fundamentally new possibilities using moving images for artistic purposes.
The simultaneous presentation of The Surrealist Project on different continents and realities does not only allow facing art in different realities but give the Surrealist ideas also a new stage of perception. Therefore, the chronological aspect became relevant in the exhibition concept – spotlighting the technological development and its manifestation in the content presentation during the past 20 years.
Vacations in the Subconscious would like to show a diversity of artistic concepts and the use of technology as a tool for transporting Surrealist ideas, how contemporary artists are inspired/influenced by the principles/ideology/imagery of Surrealism through transformation, alienation and completely new visions, and being inspired themselves to become a curator themselves.
The art videos of the Surrealist Project are originating from different sources – the archives/video collections of The New Museum of Networked Art and additionally on the submissions of an open call in Internet addressed to artists all over the world – generating a common pool of about 2000 videos for the curatorial selection.
The motto year started on 20 January 2023 at Hall of Fame @ Alphabet Art Centre with the key manifestation of – The 3 Surrealists – featuring a retrospective of the Surrealist video worlds of the three Spanish artists – Albert Merino, Laura/Sira Cabrera and Ausin Sainz – https://the-surrealists.nmartproject.net/the-3-surrealists-2/ including 10 videos by each artist, interviews, video statements – and contextual references, and 10 associated, so called (retrospective) root exhibitions, including the videos created by about 180 artists during the past 20 years – serving as a curatorial pool for their future exhibition in physical and virtual space.
Associated to the major media art context –“Peace Letters to Ukraine”, also this exhibition @ Alphabet Art Center is realized in Solidarity with Ukraine.