Confux of Parallels

This exhibition was curated as my thesis in partial fulfilment of my Honours degree
in Curatorial & Exhibition Studies at Michaelis School of Fine Arts. 

Centre for Curating the Archive, University of Cape Town, 2016
Role: Curator, Design


“Our lives are becoming more determined by the technology we use and how we present ourselves online. Social media is becoming inescapable, online portfolios and email addresses a necessity. The dynamic nature of constant connectivity and evolving connections, functions in a harmony reflective of the organic fractal structures of tree roots and blood vessels, cloud space creating infinite storage with each new branch of subculture. Cultural, social, economic, and political paradigms are becoming deeply embedded within the digital realm, but where does the divide lie between the two environments? How do these parallel dimensions interact?

Conflux of Parallels serves as an exploration of our relationship with the virtual world. The ways in which the Virtual and the Real concurrently reflect each other present us with ever-evolving approaches to existence. Some see it simply as a means to power whereas others see it as an opportunity for altering ideas and constructing new life. You are a node in a complex system of moving particles, what will you choose to do with that?

Some of the work in the exhibition needed guidance and extended information so I included a booklet with the exhibition. This booklet included transcripts to two of the videos included, instructions on how to access the augmented reality installation from the iPad, as well as how to use a virtual reality headset.

Catalogue cover image: BluntxSkensved, Gene Therapy, 2016

Participating artists:
BluntxSkensved, Alex Gvojic for Fatima al Qadiri, Franco & Eva Mattes, Mitchell Gilbert, Szonja Szendi

Photographs by Matthew Bradley

Virtual Reality as Hyper-Curation

Virtual reality was  used in this exhibition with collaborative installations curated within their respective virtual environments: Ghost Raid (2011) a music video produced by Alex Gvojic for Fatima al Qadiri, and the collection of collage images by Szonja Szendi.

For each work, the artists were contacted and I suggested to them the process I would like to take in curating their work. I suggested taking their pre-existing work and placing it in a newly created digital environment using Unity 3D modelling software, with the facilitation of Renderheads. Gallery viewers then wear a Virtual Reality headset in the gallery space in order to view the virtual installations. Prior to each project I would explain to the artists what type of an environment I would like to create and they would provide me with feedback on what they thought would work. Whereas Gjovic simply agreed and was happy with the direction I wanted to take, Szendi wanted to be a lot more involved, so I would continuously send them feedback of the environment I had created. Both environments essentially function as extensions of the artworks.

Virtual Installation views:

Szonja Szendi

Virtual Installation views:

Alex Gvojic for Fatima al Qadiri

Full List of Works ︎

Full Catalogue Essay ︎