May 20 – July 11, 2021
Art Sonje Center 3F
For the group exhibition Host Modded, participating artists Sidsel Meineche Hansen, Rachel Rose, and Jisun Kim propose divergent senses for perceiving reality. The title Host Modded combines the idea of a “host,” or the human body as a perceiving agent, with the recent coinage “modded,” referring to the modification of programs to create new functions. The exhibition is conscious of the new spatial sense acquired by a generation of people accustomed to settings situated within screens, monitors, and other similar surfaces. When we recall a memory or consider something in our mind, we tend to always imagine a specific spatial context together with it. All of us have this sense of perceiving space in our consciousness, although it changes with language, differences in past experience, and the passage of time. In the past, different perceptions and cognition of reality were simply considered errors or signs of schizophrenia. The exhibition questions whether advancements in technology have modded us into people who perceive in disparate ways.
Each of the participating artists offers particular bodies to show different perceptions of space and objects. Sidsel Meineche Hansen represents a video work in which a 3D model of Keanu Reeves welcomes the viewer into short stories navigable by a joystick. In the video, a robot relates its thoughts about the surveillance society as it wanders through a city circa 2077. Rachel Rose blends the progression of time and the structure of space as she juxtaposes the solid yet transparent structure of Philip Johnson’s Glass House with scenes showing unexpected turns of events. Jisun Kim uses her video work The House of Sorrow – House, which is based on a computer game that she developed, to situate the viewer in the position of “player.” During the exhibition, Kim will present Deep Present – Aibo (2017–2021), a performance in the exhibition space by the robot dog Aibo.
To say that we perceive the body differently even when the physical conditions of the world that surround it have not changed is ultimately to argue that we have acquired a different body. This is what the exhibition refers to as a “host,” as it seeks to perceive a specific physicality that recognizes spaces and objects. In the work of the participating artists, the Glass House built in 1948, the Aibo dog discontinued in 2006, and the realdoll first produced in 1996 are all media that make us aware of the altered physical perception, as well as objects onto which the artists’ bodies are projected. But to us, they no longer represent anything new. The works shown in this exhibition further solidify that obviousness through their instrumental use of temporal and spatial illusions that have already become pervasive. Yet we are also aware that even these obvious things will soon change as well.