The result of a process that began as an attempt to reconnect with the early promise of the network has evolved into a personal and universal narrative about the relationship between the self and Nature, and an attempt to create Net Art that intentionally deviates from the speed at which we usually consume things online.
In autumn 2014, Evan Roth set out on a peculiar kind of pilgrimage: he would seek out and visit coastal sites where undersea Internet cables emerged from the waters. The ensuing trips form the basis of an extraordinary body of work, Landscapes (2014-ongoing), exhibited here in its entirety for the first time. This series of videos and sculptures grapples with one of the most fundamental issues of today’s networked condition: the fastchanging
concept of being in time and space.
After the UK, Roth visited landing locations in Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand, the US, Sweden, France, and South Africa. With every journey, the pilgrimage’s original purpose receded a little more, the artist shifting his attention from mapping the place to simply being there.
Roth recorded his work with a camera doctored to shoot in infrared, the frequency of the information traveling through fiber optic cables. Each video was then uploaded to a server located in the country of the site represented.
Watching these works, then, is morethan just watching the documentation of a place. It’s an almost performative act of receiving data traveling physically from the work’s places of origin.
The Internet is always centrally figured in theories of contemporary cultural acceleration. But Roth’s videos carve out a space for contemplation wholly absent from the digital sphere. Landscapes has little to do with an Internet (or, indeed, Post-Internet) aesthetic, drawing instead on romanticism, landscape painting, and the pictorial tradition of ruins. Inscribed in an artistic and philosophical history that has sought to come to terms with one’s
very place in the world, they rekindle an inquisitiveness and sense of wonder many had thought lost.
About the artist:
Evan Roth (b. 1978, Michigan, USA) has tracked the impact of the Internet on global culture and social mores for over a decade. His practice spans net art, installation, sculpture, and video. It is rooted in a commitment to the original ideals of the web as a place free and accessible to all, as well as in a deeply-held belief in art’s capacity to challenge and transform reality. Poetic and often aesthetically restrained, Roth’s work unfolds as an open-ended reflection on the way digital technology is shaping people’s behavior and their sense of place in the world.
20 oct. - 10 nov. 2017
Tuesday to Sunday 11 am to 7 pm
(0) 1 47 23 38 88