Tasman Richardson “Kali Yuga”
Arsenal Contemporary Art – Until May 22, 2021 Toronto (Canada)
After debuting at Arsenal Contemporary Art Montreal in the fall of 2019. Arsenal Contemporary Art Toronto is pleased to present Kali Yuga of Tasman Richardson. An audio / visual experience that takes viewers on an immersive and psychological journey. Visitors are invited to walk the dark paths of the exhibition, relying on the artist’s signature analog monitors. Digital projections and the confrontation of video works to light their way.
Six maximalist media pieces are neatly arranged in a slightly crooked formation. Almost symmetrical and showcase Richardson’s technological ingenuity and sculptural sensibility. The collection includes a combination of generative content looted from the internet. Pre-recorded playback captured in the artist’s bedroom and live video feeds that produce haunting rotten reflections. Monitored and teleported by each visitor to the gallery.
Here, Richardson manipulates the ways of seeing and being seen, focusing on the complexity of conveying one’s own image through technology. In the era of the spectacle, he criticizes the artifice of images (of oneself) by emphasizing the parasitic relationships that they encourage between us.
The title of the exhibition, Kali Yuga (which translates to “The Age of Vice”), refers to a Hindu apocalypse tale. Throughout history, while dreaming of our universe and all the people who make it up, a deity suddenly woke up from his sleep. Upon awakening, our common reality is destroyed. Ready to be rebuilt, again.
Richardson draws parallels between Bentham’s panopticon design. The contemporary media landscape and this ancient myth. Finding that as long as the deity sleeps, our world remains a fragmented feedback loop of hyperconnectivity, self-obsession and alienation.
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