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19 May 2015

Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art: NO HUMANS INVOLVED

Design by A Practice for Everyday Life

Art In The Age Of… Planetary Computation, NO HUMANS INVOLVED & Character Is Fate
Witte de With | Center for Contemporary Art


Art In The Age Of…Planetary Computation: 22 May – 16 August 2015. Opening: 21 May 2015, 5 pm NO HUMANS INVOLVED: 22 May – 16 August 2015. Opening: 21 May 2015, 5pm with performances from 6pm Character Is Fate: On view until 3 January 2016. Book launch: 21 May 2015, 7 pm

Adelheid Smit

Witte de With | Center for Contemporary Art
Witte de Withstraat 50
3012 BR Rotterdam
The Netherlands

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This summer Witte de With is proud to announce two exhibitions: Art In The Age Of…Planetary Computation and NO HUMANS INVOLVED by artist collective HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN?, alongside the launch of Character is Fate: Piet Mondrian's Horoscope, an artist book by Willem de Rooij and Witte de With Publishers' latest title.

Art In The Age Of…Planetary Computation

22 May – 16 August 2015
Opening: 21 May 2015, 5 pm

With: Aram Bartholl, Rossella Biscotti, Nina Canell, John Gerrard, Femke Herregraven, Antonia Hirsch, David Jablonowski, Navine G. Khan-Dossos, John Menick, Owen Mundy, Trevor Paglen, Lucy Raven, Stephan Tillmans and Julia Weist.

How would you draw a picture of the Internet; through the machines and 'their' language that broadcast and store 'our' messages, or through the affect and power relations that those messages and their movement produce?

Art In The Age Of...Planetary Computation investigates how quantification, telecommunications, and our ever-expanding information apparati not only inform contemporary artistic production, but also how contemporary art can hold a mirror up to these processes and formations. The participating artists explore the fissure between literal infrastructure—code, machines, wires, and other like-vocabularies—and the subjective socio-political interactions fostered by using these devices. Guided not only by that which can be seen on the computer screen, and the various other black mirrors we stare into day in and day out, this exhibition also looks to what happens behind these screens. Moving from objects to subjects, we ask, how do these positions impact daily life, or said in another way: what does it mean to be 'screened'?

Art In The Age Of...Planetary Computation is the second iteration of Art In The Age Of..., a three-part presentation series running throughout 2015, that investigates future vectors of art production in the 21st century.

Team: Defne Ayas (Concept), Adam Kleinman (Lead Curator), Samuel Saelemakers (Associate Curator).


22 May – 16 August 2015
Opening: 21 May 2015, 5pm with performances from 6pm
Symposium: Tuesday 14 July 2015, 6pm
Exhibition Readings: 5 June, 11 June, and 3 July 2015

How are human orders reproduced vis-à-vis aesthetics? Can art be used as a vehicle to redress hegemonic ideas of the category 'human'? Is it possible to move outside of the social conditioning and culturally prescribed 'sense of self' that art has, for centuries, dictated through ideological and institutional framings?

is an exhibition by the multidisciplinary artist collective HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN?, urgently engaging questions of ontology that encompass the multiplicity of our historically and socially produced human identities. Members of the collective have been in residence in Rotterdam for two months to produce new work including video and sculptural installations, printed matter, sonic scapes and film shorts. These works situate different modes of perception as forms of aesthetic and conceptual reinvention, protest, and disobedience to normative orders.

The exhibition is complemented with a symposium on 14 July, 6pm titled Between Nothingness and Infinity, featuring Karan Barad (Professor of Feminist Studies, Philosophy and History of Consciousness, University of California), Kara Keeling (Associate Professor of Critical Studies, University of Southern California), and Alexander Wehelyie (Professor of African American Studies, Northwestern University).

Exhibition readings are offered throughout the summer by experts including Teana Boston-Mammah (Researcher, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences) on 5 June, Huey Copeland (Associate Professor of Art History, Northwestern University) on 11 June, Samir Bantal (Executive Manager, OMA) on 3 July, with additional key think pieces appearing on WDWReview.

The exhibition is curated by Nana Adusei-Poku (Curatorial Fellow, Witte de With and Research Professor in Cultural Diversity at Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences), Sienna Shields and Christa Bell of HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN?, together with Defne Ayas (Director, Witte de With) and Natasha Hoare (Associate Curator, Witte de With).

Supported by the Embassy of the United States of America, The Hague. With in-kind support by The New Foundation, Seattle.

Character Is Fate

Willem de Rooij
On view until 3 January 2016
Book Signing: 21 May 2015, 7 pm

From 27 January 2015 onwards, twenty-five years to the day Witte de With was established, Witte de With has been home to a newly commissioned installation by artist Willem de Rooij. Character Is Fate showcases an astrological birth chart Piet Mondrian had made in 1911. A special display system that relates to the solar calendar allows for the birth chart to be illuminated by the sun, best seen from 2.15pm to 2.30pm each day, all year long. While considering the conservational parameters of displaying historical objects, Character Is Fate also visualizes Witte de With's physical position in relation to the sun.

Published on the occasion of this work, an artist book by Willem de Rooij and Witte de With Publishers' latest title, Character is Fate: Piet Mondrian's Horoscope, will be available for purchase on 21 May at the Witte de With bookshop and through our website. The book contains the facsimile, its transcription, and its English translation, alongside texts by Wietse Coppes and Kocku von Stuckrad.

Join the opening and the book signing on Thursday 21 May at Witte de With!