FOMO at Syntax

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Artists: Jan Brož & Richard Nikl, Olga Cerkasova, André Sousa, Iain Ball

Exhibition title: FOMO

Curated by: Markéta Stará Condeixa

Venue:  Syntax, Lisbon, Portugal

Date:  May 8 – June 27, 2015

Photography: Bruno Lopes, images courtesy of the artists and Syntax

The current cultural condition can be best described as the culture of multiples. Multiple identities, multiple carriers, multiple tasks, multiple platforms up on which we simultaneously operate, keeping the relation and hierarchy between the one and the many in constant flux. The self has been hybridised into a complex rhizome of multiple coexistences, sudden deaths and immediate rebirths. The life span of one does not necessarily determine the life span of the other, yet is frequently determined by the total number of multiples that one is able to generate and maintain. We have given up on an information diet and said our fair well to the aesthetics of mental and physical sanity, allowing thus the corporate culture and the FEAR OF MISSING OUT (FOMO) – the cause and the effect -, to determine and run our current state of affairs, may this be within, or outside of the brackets of cultural/artistic production.

As any other field of production, contemporary art practice and present culture at large have been shaped by the condition of multiples and the corporatisation (industrialisation) of its systems. Artists and curators have been turned into cultural workers and producers, working under multiple identities at various virtual and physical sites. Creation has been exchanged for production and labour, and quality for the monetarisation of intellectual capital and institutional branding. The romantic perception of the independent artist whose work is based on introspection, solitude, reflection or semi-detached criticality is a dead horse as is the concept of any sort of offline romanticism. Cultural production is more than ever defined by the speed and efficiency of its participants, access to information, quantity of what is produced, and the contexts within which, what is produced, can be consumed or present its virtual or physical multiples, may these be connected to a multiple self or to the multiplicity of its products.

The build in heretics’ of art practice are more than ever before challenged by its own operational system, its flow and the channels that it has appropriated, multiples of which have become the subjects of their scrutiny. An outside no longer exists. Criticality can only take place from within the virtual landscape of information capital, where hierarchy is determined by the speed fed by our own FEAR OF MISSING OUT.

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Jan Brož & Richard Nikl, Kappa/ Fomo, 2015

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Jan Brož & Richard Nikl, Kappa, 2015
Olga Cerkasova, Adrenaline pigeons, 2015

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Jan Brož & Richard Nikl, Kappa, 2015

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Olga Cerkasova, Krendoline, 2014, Veins, 2015

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Olga Cerkasova, Veins, 2015

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Jan Brož & Richard Nikl, Fomo, 2015

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André Sousa, Instalation view, 2015

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Iain Ball,
 Lanthanum (from the moodboard), 2013

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Iain Ball, 
Europium (from the moodboard), 2014

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André Sousa, Instalation view, 2015

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