The exhibition is based on the social and critical theory of Zygmunt Bauman (1925-2017) that speaks about ‚Liquid Modernity’ in the book with the same title published in 2000 in Cambridge.

Liquid Bodies
Artists: Radek BROUSIL, Valentýna JANŮ, Martin KOHOUT, Pavel PŘÍKASKÝ, Marie TUČKOVÁ, Adam VACKAR
Curated by Sandra BABOROVSKÁ
June 28 - September 9, 2018
aqb Project Space, Budapest

Liquid modernity is a consequence of globalization. Bauman examines how we have moved away from hardware-focused modernity to a liquid software-based modernity that caused profound changes in to all aspects of the human condition. The instantaneous time of the software world is immediate but also leads to exhaustion and fading interest. If solid modernity posited eternal duration as the main motive ‚Fluidity’ is the metaphor for the present stage of era.
Czech artists presented at aqb Project Space Budapest are dealing with topic of consume life with its consequences. Adam Vačkář and Radek Brousil are reflecting changes in ecology, (non)recyclation and unscrupulous behaviour of mankind. Vačkář works with (Still Life / Nature Morte, 2013) and this ‚vanitas’ as a memento for the planet. ‘Consumers are originally looking for more experiences rather then things,’ wrote Bauman in his predictive book ‘Globalisation: The Human Consequences’ (New York, 1998). Brousil is more interested in market and its unfair manners that sells products without respect to nature and people (Greenfashion, 2017). Language of both artists is poetic and it works with topic of trade with flowers and plastic. Brousil mix his work with music style called indie emo (Too Proud to Hope, too Weak to Climb, 2018). Development of technology is a topic of Pavel Příkask that is fascinated by microscopic photo of tongue and senses of taste (Hybrid’s potential, 2018) – in this case ‚acid’ one. The other work of him is sensual close up to ‚skin’ (Relief, 2016). Martin Kohout that was awarded by Jindřich Chalupecký prize last year is presenting a futuristic movie representing a new form of communication and ambivalent relationships and love (Slides, 2017). That is also main topic for Marie Tučková with her cyborg alter-ego identity (Ursula Uwe: Monuments of Love, 2018) and Siri, robot from apple product (We Are Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places, 2017). The uncanny frailty of human bonds, the feeling of insecurity that frailty inspires, and the conflicting desires to tighten the bonds yet keep them loose, are the principal themes of Bauman’s book‚ Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds’ (Cambridge, 2003): ‘Cellphones help you stay connected to people who are far away from you. Cellphones allow you to stay keeping you at a distance.’ That is the paradox of life nowadays. Valentýna Janů plays with roles of a girl in her orange living room like in a computer game (Is Your Blue The Same as Mine? 2018). She is speaking about such emotions as fear of loneliness, consumeristic desire and (un-)ability to feel hurt and love. Do tears represent our love or just gravity if our desire is just the wish to consume?

Text by Sandra BABOROVSKÁ


Photo: Aron WEBER, all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and aqb Project Space, Budapest