Ed Atkins, Even Pricks, 2013 (Video stills) © and courtesy the artist and Cabinet, London

The New Human

A project in several chapters

THE NEW HUMAN is a film and video-based exhibition project in several chapters. You and I in Global Wonderland served as the subtitle of the project’s first chapter, displayed at Moderna Museet Malmö in 2015. It focused on a world characterised by intensified globalisation and migration, and presented poetic reflections on the hybrid mental states that can arise in people who live in several cultures.

On a glittery dance floor, the audience were confronted with numerous examples of religious fanaticism and political extremism. There were also documentary video reports of the rapid growth of nationalistic and neo-fascist ideologies in different parts of Europe, and during a charged September evening, the people of Malmö gathered in a lecture hall to bear witness to Europe’s handling of the refugee crisis.

Knock, Knock, Is Anyone Home?

Chapter two of THE NEW HUMAN, shown at Moderna Museet Malmö until September 4, 2016, deals with the accelerating technological development. Several works are set in laboratory environments where a new humanity can be discerned. Visitors are drawn into hyper artificial, virtual worlds and confronted with human-looking creatures that seem to have mutated with information technology and global corporate culture into something beyond human. The subtitle Knock, Knock, Is Anyone Home? refers to the presence or non-presence of human life. While global capitalism has evolved into the largest machine of our time, new technologies have developed with the capacity to penetrate our bodies and create cyborgs, hybrids between organism and machine.

THE NEW HUMAN in Stockholm

When THE NEW HUMAN is shown at Moderna Museet in Stockholm from May 2016 to March 2017, works from the previous two chapters are combined into one exhibition. Seemingly diverse subject matters converge on the central question of the condition and possible future of humans. New works have been added, such as God is Design by Adel Abdessemed, in which ornamental symbols from the three monotheistic religions, Christianity, Islam and Judaism – are fused with each other and with schematic drawings of human cells. Frances Stark’s My Best Thing, a work based on the artist’s virtual dating, and Hito Steyerl’s How Not to be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational .MOV File, which gives instructions on how to achieve invisibility
in a digitised world, are also shown within the project for the first time.

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