Following its success at Bildmuseet, Umeå the exhibition Perpetual Uncertainty returns for a second iteration at Z33, Belgium, exploring contemporary art in the nuclear anthropocene.
Curated by Arts Catalyst's associate curator Dr. Ele Carpenter
, the exhibition brings together international artists from across Europe, the USA and Japan to investigate experiences of nuclear technology, radiation and the complex relationship between knowledge and deep time.
The nuclear anthropocene describes how man-made radiation has contaminated the earth, forming a mark of human activity that will last for hundreds of thousands of years. Whilst 20th century fallout provides a time-stamp of the first nuclear age from nuclear weapons testing; the 21st century repositories for high-level radioactive waste will physically create a new geologic layer in the earth’s fossil record for over 100,000 years. Looking beyond the modernist vision of a utopian nuclear age, contemporary artists are engaging with the lived experience of radiation through nuclear objects, architectures and landscapes. Investigating new forms of nuclear vernacular, folklore and rethinking the markers and archives of the nuclear anthropocene.
A programme of events exploring the nuclear will accompany the exhibition, including field trips to nuclear sites with artists, and a roundtable discussion bringing together different experiences and approaches to nuclear aesthetics and politics.
Featured artists: James Acord, Shuji Akagi, Lise Autogena and Joshua Portway, Nick Crowe and Ian Rawlinson, Finger Pointing Worker, Dave Griffiths, Isao Hashimoto, Erika Kobayashi, David Mabb, Cécile Massart, Eva and Franco Mattes, Yelena Popova, Susan Schuppli, Shimpei Takeda, Kota Takeuchi, Thomson & Craighead, Suzanne Treister, Andy Weir, Robert Williams and Bryan McGovern Wilson, and Ken + Julia Yonetani.
Perpetual Uncertainty is produced by Bildmuseet, Umeå and curated by Ele Carpenter with the support of Z33, Arts Catalyst London