Myths of the Marble
Installation shot: Øystein Thorvaldsen / Henie Onstad Archive
The group show Myths of the Marble explores how the notion of "the virtual" can be used as a way to image and imagine the world as both a site of possibility and a set of limitations.
Here, “marble” doubles as a reference to the 1972 NASA photograph of Earth from space (the Blue Marble), and to the classical sculptural material often used to simulate the human form. By extension this reflects on the context of the museum and the way contemporary artists negotiate the blurring of the immaterial and the physical. Many of the artworks on view trouble this line between the analog and the digital, suggesting a more nuanced approach to technology (be it hard, soft, or wet) that is explored through a wide range of media, from painting and 16mm film to VR-technology and 3D animation.
Myths of the Marble thus considers alternative forms of virtuality that meditate on extensions of the body, ecological formations, and architectural space and emphasize the time-bound, the perceptual, and the haptic. At a moment when the capacity to depict the world in high definition has never been greater, reality is itself increasingly understood as a construction. In this respect, it is essential that today "the virtual" be seen not simply as an escapist technology promoted by Silicon Valley, but reclaimed as a way to mobilize a new political imaginary.