Vladan Joler: New Extractivism (2020), detail, © Vladan Joler.
Vladan Joler: New Extractivism (2020), detail, © Vladan Joler.

Allegories of an Automated Present
23th April – 30th May 2020
Óbuda Gasworks as part of OFF Biennale Budapest 2021

The solo show of Vladan Joler will be realized in collaboration between Igor Metropol and the OFF Biennale Budapest 2021 at the Óbuda Gasworks. The exhibition describes through the unique visual language of Joler the increasingly impactful tendencies of computation, at the same time enhances the topic of the current edition of the OFF Biennale entitled Inhale! in this direction.

Whether we are talking about the meteorological phenomenon or the infrastructure of information technology, the formation processes of clouds are influenced by air humidity and atmospheric pressure. For the first type of cloud the connection is straightforward, while for the second type the palpable network holding up the elusive structure is only partially dependent on terrestrial conditions such as climate.

Even if they rely on geographical embedding, the shoots of the digital rhizome enmeshing the whole planet and conditioning its political and social dimensions are not determined by the rules of Newtonian absolute space. Their direct representation is therefore unimaginable. The research-based, metaphor-laden works of Vladan Joler aim to map this digital infrastructure and its invisible contexts through an accessible visual language. Joler occasionally collaborates with an expert in the field he is investigating—the anatomy of an artificial intelligence, the gestalt of neural networks, or the social and political connotations of surveillance capitalism—in order to create comprehensive infographics. His interdisciplinary methodology utilizes the tools of data mining, mapping, investigative journalism, data visualization, and critical design.

The process of industrialization, with its provision of stable access to electricity, is prerequisite for the development of networked information technology. The electrical center of the former Gas Factory of Óbuda is thus both the venue of the exhibition and a memento of the roots of automatization.

Curator: Nolasco-Rózsás Lívia
Assistant curator: Viski Noémi
Supporters: Graphisoft park, Summa Artium