White Columns Online: ‘Default Network’ curated by Jamie SternsMarch 18–April 22, 2017
Human beings are innately social. Our brains are the largest to body size then any other animal. Neuroscientists have discovered that when we are at rest our brains fall into a neural mode called the “default network.” This occurs when we are not doing an action, like catching a ball or assembling a bed. This default network mode is almost identical to how our brains operate when it is social thinking: thinking about other people and ourselves.
So when we are inactive we are essentially thinking about what the next social interaction will be. We are priming ourselves on how we will interact with others and how we will interact with them.
You are now reading this online. You are reading words that I wrote while you are somewhere. You may be at your desk, in the subway, or waiting for your friend to arrive. You are where you are and I am where I am but we are communicating in someway.
The artists on this registry are somewhere too. They are trying to communicate by leaving images on a site that acts as a virtual file cabinet. They have compiled these images so that they can be found. They want to be found. They are here in the world just like you and me.
This platform, like the world we live in, is mediated. We look at images online. We talk online. We text and look at others online. We produce our personas and brands online. What are the implications of all this mediation, all this methodology of presentation? That depends on intention. The translation of point A to point B is not merely a means but the entire thing. What is the ‘thing?’ The thing is the point of A to B. The purpose of why we want to get from A to B.
We are all singularly at point A. The means to getting to B can take the form of talking, looking, thinking, communicating and also through images and art.
Art is a hole in the lock that lets you see that there is a point B.
The images on this registry are not the end point; they are not the actual art or the actual person but they serve as stand-ins for the art and to the person. The selection of images you are seeing evoke this need to connect, albeit random and preliminary.
Does this process of being mediated mean that we are further away from each other? Yes. But it also means that we are closer, or can be. We are all trying to connect because we have to. We need to. It’s in our nature even if the paths we create to get to from A to B feels winding and distant.
Jamie Sterns is the Curatorial Director of Interstate Projects and works at NYU.
This exhibition is the second in a series of online ehxibitions; this exhibition was curated from White Columns' Artists Registry.
Participating Artists Include:
David Robert Elliott
Leopold van de Ven
For more information: registry.whitecolumns.org