/ PAST Exhibitions
23 August 2015 to 9 September 2015
Walkabout: Saturday 29 August at 11h00
Altered Realities, curated by Johan Conradie, is an exhibition of the works of 26 contemporary artists using mixed media, digital and other software-techniques to create ‘altered realities’, merging richly symbolic images both personal and archetypal. Straddling the thin sliver of space between reality and imagination, these artists create inner visions to expose and explore the dreams and fantasies of the human mind. In true surrealistic fashion, they delight in linking together seemingly unrelated and even absurd objects to question the rational order of the world. Art is an act of exploring and conjuring. Straddling the thin sliver of space between reality and imagination, art is an act of looking beyond the hard crust of reality. The so-called ‘inner picture’: a subjective, individual world that may seem familiar to all, but is not a straightforward representation of reality, has been an abiding concern of contemporary art. The Surrealists delighted in mixing dreams and reality, linking together seemingly unrelated, even absurd things to question the rational order of the world. The tradition continues today in the most recent Venice Biennale, where a focus was placed on art that was inspired by a meditation on ‘inner images’, dreams and the creative recesses of the human mind. Imagination and reality don’t always make easy bedfellows, the former mocking the insipidity of the latter, the latter sneering at the futility of the former. Yet, neither can stand on its own; only by virtue of the other does each take on meaning – for imagination without reality is but an ethereal haze, reality without imagination a parched desert. At certain points in history, dragged down by the dull drudgery of reality, we dream of escaping to an imagined world.