The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

Harn Museum of Art at University of Florida

Richard Mosse, Stalemate, 2011. Digital chromogenic print, 48 × 60 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery.

January 9, 2019
The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene
International contemporary art addressing human impact on the environment
September 18, 2018–March 3, 2019
Harn Museum of Art at University of Florida
3259 Hull Road
Gainesville, Florida 32608
United States
Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / #TheWorldtoCome

The Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida explores an era of rapid, radical and irrevocable ecological change through works of art by 45 international contemporary artists. Curated by Kerry Oliver-Smith, the Harn-organized exhibition The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene is on view now through March 3, 2019. The fate of our planet is examined through more than 65 works including photography, film, sculpture and mixed media. 

While geological epochs are known as products of slow change, the Anthropocene has been characterized by speed. Runaway climate change, rising water, surging population, non-stop extinction and expanding technologies compress our breathless sense of space and time. Human impact has created a profound and disastrous effect on the Earth. Artists in the exhibition respond by upending the status quo, challenging human mastery over nature and attuning us to the deep bond between human and non-human life. 

The World to Come unfolds around seven overlapping themes: “Deluge,” “Raw Material,” “Consumption,” “Extinction,” “Symbiosis and Multispecies,” “Justice” and “Imaginary Futures.” Topics range from disaster, environmental devastation and loss to the emergence of new bonds and alliances between humans and non-humans. Also considered is the magnitude of waste and growing populations, the laws of nature, inequality and protest. Lastly, artists explore the effects of technology and make a call for optimism with new ways of imagining a vibrant future for the world to come.

Artists whose work is on view in the exhibition embrace a rethinking and re-visioning of humanity’s relationship to nonhuman life. These artists include Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla, Claudia Andujar, Sammy Baloji, Subhankar Banerjee, Huma Bhabha, Liu Bolin, Edward Burtynsky, Sandra Cinto, Elena Damiani, Dornith Doherty, Charles Gaines, Mishka Henner, Felipe Jácome, Chris Jordan, William Kentridge, Wifredo Lam, Maroesjka Lavigne, Eva Leitolf, Dana Levy, Yao Lu, Pedro Neves Marques, Noelle Mason, Mary Mattingly, Gideon Mendel, Ana Mendieta, Kimiyo Mishima, Richard Misrach, Beth Moon, Richard Mosse, Jackie Nickerson, Gabriel Orozco, Trevor Paglen, Abel Rodríguez, Allan Sekula, Taryn Simon, Nicole Six and Paul Petritsch, Laurencia Strauss, Thomas Struth, Bethany Taylor, Frank Thiel, Sergio Vega, Andrew Yang, and Haegue Yang.

A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition with essays by Kerry Oliver-Smith, Harn Curator of Contemporary Art; Marisol de la Cadena, Professor of Anthropology, University of California, Davis; T. J. Demos, Professor of History of Art and Director of the Center for Creative Ecologies at the University of California, Santa Cruz; Natasha Myers, Associate Professor of Anthropology, York University; Trevor Paglen, artist, geographer and writer; and Joanna Zylinska, Professor of New Media and Communications, Goldsmiths, University, London. 

The exhibition will travel to the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor from April 27, 2019 to July 28, 2019.

The exhibition is made possible by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, UF Office of the Provost, National Endowment for the Arts, C. Frederick and Aase B. Thompson Foundation, Ken and Laura Berns, Daniel and Kathleen Hayman, Ken and Linda McGurn, Susan Milbrath, an anonymous foundation, Visit Gainesville, UF Center for Humanities and the Public Sphere, UF Office of Research, Robert and Carolyn Thoburn, UF Biodiversity Institute, UF Center for Latin American Studies, UF Water Institute and UF Department of English Imagining Climate Change program with additional support from a group of environmentally-minded supporters, the Robert C. and Nancy Magoon Contemporary Exhibition and Publication Endowment, Harn Program Endowment, and the Harn Annual Fund.

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Harn Museum of Art at University of Florida
January 9, 2019

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