Insights_08 — Envisioning a plausible future
The future makes us ask ourselves plenty of questions and allows us to imagine a hypothetical scenario where fiction and reality face the unknown. Depicting their own visions of the development of our current societies and environment, the following artists investigated their own context to introduce us to their interpretation of a possible outcome.
Starting from a thorough analysis of the past, their projects focus on the numerous possibilities that the future has for us. Side by side with this, they also study the actual social events, examining the landscape in transformation and the outcomes of our technological progress, as a way of anticipating a personal point of view of how our world is evolving.
Through the use of visual metaphors, Domonkos pictures an utopian future rich in references and symbols that allude 20th century dystopian literature. However this work is not all about references, it examines how utopian and dystopian ideas can relate to our current technological and social changes.
Indeed the series also emphasises how the contemporary social and political decisions point towards the future, foretelling historical prophecies. Covering a wide range of issues in his narrative, Domonkos approaches a futuristic perspective to encourage critical thinking and an appraisal of our rushing developing world. The title refers to the ‘Cassandra Complex’ , a fictional concept used to describe those who can visualise the future, but cannot do anything to avoid it.
We are still recovering from what happened in 2020. The pandemic changed the world and we were forced to visualise a New World. Combining still-life and portraiture, Charmaine de Heij reflects in this intimate project the incomprehension of what was happening to her on a personal level.
From psychological to identity topics, the series explores the edges between truth and fiction. Digging deeper into her buried memories, she created a representation of what could be lost in her mind, assembling a new reality that invites the viewer to question this dystopian world.
Referencing that space between personal and collective stories, Something Where There Should be Nothing: Nothing Where There Should be Something, interweaves elements from the past and present in order to construct a disjointed fiction. Conceived as a deep exploration, Anna Sturgeon points to a paradox between an apparent artificial reality and another one that exceeds our ordinary perception.
These two coexisting realities generate a “space in between” that is what drives Anna’s investigation. The association of objects that belonged to her family and her own images, envisage a personal search for meaning and what lies beyond our view. In its core, the project is an exploration that is not intended to be finished, rather its ambition is to discover the nature of the unknown.
Envisaged as a photographic essay, The Last Man on Earth by Joan Alvado opens up a dialogue with the interior and mountainous Spanish landscape, questioning what the future of these territories might be.
Known as Serrania Celtiberica, this region is the second most depopulated area in Europe. Consequences come from a constant migration of people due to the current economic model, where large areas have been left behind due to the insufficiency of labour in the primary sector. The question is clear: How will these areas look in 30, 40 or 50 years?. Alvado presents landscapes avoiding nostalgia, which in this case can blur the raw reality occurring in these places.
Domonkos Varga (b. 1998, Hungary) is a conceptual artist and photographer based in Budapest.
Supporting his projects with a well-researched background, Domonkos composes visual examinations that generate strong narratives.
Charmaine de Heij (The Netherlands/Suriname) works between Berlin and The Netherlands.
There are numerous topics that she touches on her practice. Most of them come from an study of psychological and identity issues.
Anna Sturgeon (b. 1998, United Kingdom) is a photographer based in Bristol, the United Kingdom.
On her last series, Anna explores and questions the concept of ‘reality’ and the eerie nature of the unknown through the investigation of alternative realities.
Joan Alvado (b. 1979, Spain) is a Spanish photographer based in Barcelona
He focuses his practice on long-term projects with an anthropological approach that examines the nature of man through several historical layers.
INSIGHTS is the an initiative by Conceptual Projects that puts the spotlight on artists’ narratives. In Conceptual Projects, we truly believe that collaboration is essential for success and visibility on these days. INSIGHTS was created to bring together photography based projects that explore similar areas of investigation, initiating dialogues between artists and their projects.
Images courtesy of:
Juan Blasco — Founder & Curator of Conceptual Projects