The group exhibition Living Labor explores how the time, space, and forms of labor have been restructured in recent decades.
The works presented in Living Labor are inquiries into the time and space of labor. Rather than offering representations of the different global workforces or places of production today, the exhibition considers “work” as the core activity of our existence and as a social convention. We work not just because we have to sustain ourselves, but because we feel we must.
Of particular interest is the increasing erasure of the clear demarcation between work and life, between time on and off the clock. In different ways, the artists ask questions about the shifting conditions of labor, pointing to the way work increasingly enlists not only our bodies, but our minds and hearts in the quest for productivity.
Against the backdrop of an uncertain future marked by an instable euro zone, increasing unemployment and income gaps in individual countries, as well as of a migratory, precarious and underpaid labor force, it seems all the more pertinent to query why we continue to work as we do.
The works of art on view, often self reflexive and performative, draw lines to the past, look critically at the present, and begin to imagine what a future where work, and the economic regime that underpins it, might be resisted and reconfigured.