Jonathan Monaghan, Latet Anguis II, 2021, Giclée on Hahnemühle Photo Luster mounted on ragboard, maple frame, 12,9 x 17,3 inches
06/11/2021 - 18/12/2021
Opening weekend, in the presence of the artist:
Saturday 06/11/2021, 2pm-8pm
Sunday 07/11/2021, 2pm-7pm
Power Trip exalts technophilia while presenting dreamlike spaces associated with the aesthetics of utopia and fantasy.
The appliances emulated within this exhibition are quotidian devices that are used to send and receive data (Internet of Things). Driven by voice activation and sold at a semi-accessible price point, a wide range of consumers are invited to live and communicate with these products. This human-machine dialogue is steadily impacting the language and behaviors of contemporary culture. Jonathan Monaghan examines the aesthetic function of these devices, elevating them to the level of festooned decoration to further illustrate their insignificance. His sardonic renderings act as a cautionary portrait of capital and overconsumption.
In a video intitled Den of Wolves (2020) Jonathan Monaghan's subversive approach unfolds into a new level of interpretation. When the artist first started on this piece, at the start of 2020, its barren urban environments were meant to emphasize feelings of isolation often caused by a disconnect between humans and technology. However, empty grocery store shelves and abandoned Apple stores take on a new layer of meaning today: it is a scenario that has become commonplace in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The video installation creates a new mythological narrative about power and authority in the digital age by revisiting the Capitol in Washington, D.C., sending us back to the rioters storming the Capitol on January 6, 2021 after this video was made.
Power Trip explores material, digital and technological excess as a characteristic of contemporary society and, by presenting Jonathan Monaghan's prescient vision, reminds us of an artist's ability to extrapolate the future from his or her perception of the present.