La Turbo Avedon: Pardon Our Dust

La Turbo Avedon: Pardon Our Dust

MAK – Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna

June 28, 2022
La Turbo Avedon
Pardon Our Dust
June 22–September 25, 2022
MAK – Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna
Stubenring 5
1010 Vienna
Hours: Tuesday 10am–9pm,
Wednesday–Sunday 10am–6pm

T +43 1 711360
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“have i loaded, once again
i could see it all reflecting back
a canopy advertising every heaven
infinite subdivisions, simulated parcels
in the surface of this reloading stream”

With Pardon Our Dust, the MAK is presenting the first solo exhibition by La Turbo Avedon in Austria. La Turbo Avedon, a non-binary artist and curator exclusively performs as an avatar in the virtual world. For the MAK, they developed a new time-based CGI-installation told from the perspective of the avatar in the form of an endlessly looped simulation.

Presented on a central largescale projection and five synchronized screens the virtual journey leads through different landscapes and spaces that are in a state of construction and deconstruction—an allusion to the title of the exhibition and the development of Web3.

The narration begins and ends at a flooded petrol station with the sign “Lethe”: The name is linked to the mythological river Lethe, meaning oblivion also in the sense of concealment. According to the Greek mythology, drinkers of the Lethe’s water would lose their memories before entering the realm of the dead in order to forget everything that was and be reborn into immortality.

Various interactions with water thus structure the complex narration that unfolds around questions of transformation and time through the avatar’s poetic monologue. While the story line develops on the central projection, moving through different abandoned virtual environments like suburban houses or a lush forest, the vertical screens turn into virtual “fortune-telling machines” with four different animated versions of La Turbo Avedon avatar-self, prompting visitors to leave flowers. The horizontal screen acts as a “mirror” and portal to the virtual world, reflecting the spoken text. A machine learning algorithm temporarily takes control of the rendered image sequences creating abstract images which eventually merge to a timeless virtual space, infinitely reflecting brand messages until the focus shifts to a shimmering light in the distance: “Lethe.”

Pardon Our Dust refers to the development of the internet in the 1990s when this slogan was used on websites under construction. Alluding to the construction of Web3, the metaverse and the jargon of the crypto community, La Turbo Avedon assumes a critical position regarding the alleged decentralization of the internet, privatization of digital space, and the commercial and colonialist heritage of the physical world which is propagated online.

About La Turbo Avedon
As an artist, La Turbo Avedon was “born” in 2008/09 in the metaverse of the collective online computer game Second Life. Since then, La Turbo Avedon has been living and working in cyberspace, creating digital installations, simulations, sculptures, videos, and performances while running virtual art spaces like Club Rothko and Panther Modern.

The extensive queer and subcultural history of the new media and the beginnings of the internet are a repeating theme for La Turbo Avedon regarding the creation of their own identities as well as the exploration and creation of virtual realities and meaningful encounters within them.

In their work La Turbo Avedon assimilates elements from video game environments as well as quotes from the current web culture and critically addresses the medium of the internet and its technological and economic developments.

Curator: Marlies Wirth, Curator, Digital Culture and MAK Design Collection

Stay connected
Please check our website for curator guided tours, artist talks and updates on our program. Press release and exhibition views available here.

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MAK – Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna
June 28, 2022

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