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Monthly Archives: September 2010

Suspending Disbelief
Lighthouse, Brighton, UK
28 August – 5 September 2010
http://www.lighthouse.org.uk/programme/suspending-disbelief

For four years, I directed Lighthouse an arts agency in Brighton in the UK. Suspending Disbelief was one of the first exhibitions I curated there, during my first year in post.

Suspending Disbelief presented the work of Julian Oliver (pictured above), Caleb Larsen, Andrew Friend (pictured below) and Becca Gill & Jay Kerry. It drew together works of contemporary art and design which exist in the interstices between the real and the fictional. The artists participating in the exhibition materialise speculative ideas, near-futures or illusory realities.

It brought together works of contemporary art and design which exist in the interstices between the real and the fictional. The artists who participated in the exhibition materialise speculative ideas, near-futures, or illusory realities, in a series of verisimilar devices, sculptures, interactive objects, photographic scenarios and installations which challenge our perception of what is plausible. All the works shown inSuspending Disbelief were being shown in Brighton for the first time.

The exhibition was part of Brighton’s major digital design conference, dConstruct produced by Clearleft, which each year brought leading names in design and user interaction to the UK.

The works inSuspending Disbelief went beyond being mere puzzles: they were reality hacks, conceptual conundrums and physicalised thought-experiments which call into question everyday logic and its interaction rules and rituals.

They included a physical sculpture made by American artist, Caleb Larsen, that is perpetually attempting to auction itself on eBay; a series of uncannily real yet seemingly impossible devices created by London-based designer, Andrew Friend; a 3D spatial memory game made by Berlin-based artist Julian Oliver, that takes the form of a digital Echeresque-world; and an installation by Bristol artists, Becca Gill & Jay Kerry where the trickery and illusion of 19th century magic is materialised through pervasive media.

Suspending Disbelief was a pilot project, developed in partnership with Arts Council England and Clearleft, which grew into what became Brighton Digital Festival.

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