It is not really so new at all, if you are an astute life participant. However, for those not paying such close attention, the New Museum “Surround Audience”-themed Triennial examines the impact of our increased global connectedness on art. It opens a dialogue about art’s role in balancing self-image, commercial interests, and privacy in today’s data-driven world. Moreover, the Triennial exhibit showcases artists whose practice goes beyond the traditional gallery space. Curated by Lauren Cornell and Los Angeles artist and filmmaker Ryan Trecartin, the show draws attention to artists who utilize sound, video, dance, comedy, and poetry in addition to sculpture and painting. An intriguing installation one can’t miss upon entering the New Museum lobby on the ground floor is The Island, presented by artist collective DIS.
The installation was done in collaboration with kitchen and bath designers Dornbracht and designer Mike Meiré. I mean, really, what collectista worth her weight in Yves Klein gold leaves isn’t redoing his/her kitchen or bathroom as you read this feature? I had the distinct opportunity to download with the brains behind DIS. They explained that the smart Island at the New Museum was codesigned to present a surreal version of a culturally advanced bathroom and kitchen. It weighs seven tons and utilizes “super performing” water. It is based on the theory that data plus water is the new oil. We can create water that energizes us or relaxes us in our daily lives. This single island also features a horizontal shower and an electric stove for cooking. It is an incredible space, with a performer who choreographs her moves in what appears to be a showroom of the future. The viewer has an experience of, “Wait, am I in the wrong space here?” There is also an accompanying video that plays behind the Island when the live “Real Housewife”-type performer is absent. It is the perfect example of hyperconnectivity and how data is so totally interwoven with our everyday lifestyle.
2015 Triennial: Surround Audience
February 25–May 24, 2015
New York City