November 16, 2018 - S.M.A.K. - Signal or Noise | The Photographic II
November 16, 2018


Courtesy S.M.A.K.

Signal or Noise | The Photographic II
November 10, 2018–February 10, 2019

Jan Hoetplein 1
9000 Ghent
Hours: Tuesday–Friday 5:30pm–9:30am,
Saturday–Sunday 10am–6pm

T +32 9 323 60 01

The Photographic is a two-part exhibition that navigates by an expanded notion of photography: from medium to mentality. Whereas the first part, Other Pictures (S.M.A.K., 2017) was dedicated to the still image, Signal or Noise inverses this perspective and deploys the camera as a metaphor for the apparatus of photography, encompassing its modes of production, distribution and consumption. The exhibition addresses the semantic processes that are generated when images disseminate, disappear and resurrect, while allowing mutations to thrive simultaneously along the way. As images and their surroundings increasingly merge, it becomes harder to differentiate between signal and noise.

Transcending medium-specific categories, the exhibition acknowledges "the photographic" as a flexible, irreducible and common condition, allowing it to be more broadly situated in society. How do images affect contemporary notions of subjectivity and identity? What part do they play in our constructed realities? Which are the economic models and power structures that capitalise on our interactions? What happens when images produce data? How are we to read the immaterial connotations and quasi-naturalisation of metaphors such as the "cloud" or the "ocean" of images? Cultural globalisation has provided images with an integrated structure that seemingly facilitates sharing and collaboration while its emancipatory potential remains to be assessed. In addition, the pace of societal progress differs profoundly from the accelerated processing of images, information and relations.

Signal or Noise | The Photographic II brings together 14 international artists who have invested in the social, economic and ideological constructs that inform visual production. Strategies of displacement, material transformation and deceleration allow for underlying mechanisms to unravel and meet with aesthetics that incorporate the image’s own facticity and materiality. The continuous puncturing of representational schemes is a common venture—one that no longer considers the image as a singular and substantive entity.

With works by Tony Cokes, Forensic Architecture, Lynn Hershman Leeson, David Horvitz, Aaron Flint Jamison, Louise Lawler, Sharon Lockhart, Hana Miletić, Jean-Luc Moulène, Sondra Perry, Marina Pinsky, Seth Price, R. H. Quaytman and Thomas Ruff

In the context of the exhibition, a magazine will be published by Roma Publications, Amsterdam. It contains an introduction by the exhibition’s curators Tanja Boon and Martin Germann together with additional essays and texts on the artists participating.

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