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Exhibition: ‘abandon all hope ye who enter here’, for refusal transmediale 2021–22

Text by CLOT Magazine

Wie Kan Zijn Noodlot Dwingen, Cihad Caner, film still © Cihad Caner

transmediale recently announced the details of their exhibition, concluding the year-long festival. abandon all hope ye who enter here will take place from 26 January to 18 February 2022  at Akademie der Künste, Berlin.

Challenging ideas of technology as smooth and seamless, abandon all hope ye who enter here explores the toxicity of computationally constructed damage in our everyday lives with work by Annex, Ibiye Camp, Cihad Caner, Tianzhuo Chen, Stine Deja, Constant Dullaart, Lo-Def Film Factory, Alaa Mansour, and The Underground Division. 

The selection of artworks will examine how dysfunction and its instrumentalisation is central to the logic and operations of technology. From mineral extraction, heat-generating desires, anxiety-inducing doom scrolls, false technological promises, dark patterns and the persistence of colonial labels, the exhibition asks, what possibilities of refusal are there in confronting the broken realities of technology? Playing with Dante’s notion of the Inferno, the exhibition questions the organising principles of computation and the algorithmic values of classification, isolation, and reasoning. 

The works also explore the modalities of power and control in the military-entertainment complex, confront the aftermath of environmental extraction, and summon ghostly apparitions of a Dutch dessert to question the prejudices behind the meaning of names. 

With a breath of dark humour, impudence, and artifice, the exhibition builds from Rendering Refusal – the opening exhibition of transmediale 2021–22 – and asks: what does refusal look like in a damaged world? Alongside the symposium at Haus der Kulturen der Welt on 28 and 29 January, the exhibition concludes transmediale’s year-long inquiry on refusal. 

The exhibition will also have its virtual counterpart with Proxy Visits for abandon all hope ye who enter here. Visitors will directly connect via video call with a Proxy host at Akademie der Künste. Proxy visitors will explore the exhibition as a unique viewing experience through direct interaction with the host. 

(Image courtesy of transmediale)
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