Opening 2 September 2021, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Exhibition duration 3 September – 21 November 2021
For the project Specular, artist Tony Oursler has produced seven new spherical digital projections of macro shots of eyes. This is a continuation of a series which began in 1996 and various iterations have been produced through the years. These works express the artist’s fascination with the public attraction to mimetic moving image technology and the paradoxical position of the viewer who is more interested in models of the world than the world itself. Incorporating 4K technology to capture digital reflections in the cornea and iris of the viewer as they absorb information in a trance-like state, the works question the trajectory of the social fabric inherent in this process. For this series entitled Specular, Oursler has produced seven new projections dealing with social media and the construction of conspiracy theories prevalent today. The viewer is invited to wander through the installation and participate in the layered perspectives inherent in screen culture today. The tension between isolation and activation has never been more important as the evolving platforms of social media generate new myths within conspiracy theories in a post-truth environment. These works explore the creative and destructive energy of conspiracy theories such as denial of the moon landing, the illuminati, 5G/Covid causation, chemtrails, and the pseudoscience of iridology and psychedelics. These elements are incorporated into the eyes of the viewers through literal reflection and various special effects. The work also documents and takes inspiration from the visual artist Christine Nguyen Hung’s struggle to regain her sight as a metaphor for the balance between inner vision and overlapping world views.