Paul Chapellier, Rachel Cheung, Anna Mikkola and MH Sarkis: 2068
15 Nov 2018 – 12 Jan 2019

SPACE Mare Street
15 Nov 2018 – 12 Jan 2019
Exhibition party: 6 Dec, 6 – 9pm
Free & all welcome

Performances: Rachel Cheung
Thu 6 Dec 8 – 8.30pm (during opening)
Sat 15 Dec 4.15 – 4.45pm (after Daniel Rourke’s talk)
Fri 4 Jan 3 – 3.30pm
Fri 11 Jan 3 – 3.30pm (closing performance)

Talk: Daniel Rourke, Sat 15 Dec, 3 – 4pm

2068 explores alternative futures and speculative concepts involving gender, virtuality, convergence of nature and technology, and non-human perception. Through the works of Paul Chapellier, Rachel Cheung, Anna Mikkola and MH Sarkis the exhibition manifests imagined ways of living and explores the role of art objects within these scenarios.

Paul Chapellier’s Live Edge examines synthetic nature in relation to design. The work embodies the ambiguous agency that survives in the reproduction of nature and its circulation as an image, beyond the distinction between the human and the natural.

Rachel Cheung performs a response to a vision of future artist’s spaces in a four-part performance that considers the collaboration of living and working spaces and the role of art objects and methods. The preservation of future spaces for artists is presented in a ‘cold room’ concept where residual actions and gestures made by the artist are built up over the course of the exhibition.

Anna Mikkola’s video work looks at how non-human vision transforms the human perspective and the making of art. Exploring these questions through a speculative future scenario and looking at the human-machine collaboration, her video presents a subject playing out automated loops and rituals.

MH Sarkis’ Motherboard seems dormant until it is touched and brought to life. Upon such human contact, the conductivity of the steel and threads running throughout the piece trigger a euphony of deconstructed, human sounds. Made in collaboration with Vytas Niedvaras, who created bespoke software and hardware, and informed the technological nature of this work.


Accompanying exhibition text

From this vantage I can no longer cleanly distinguish between the images that I make and those that are made in my name. This is not really a question of authorship – I do not think that there is any other person out there trying to take anything from me. I do not think that there is anyone here. It has been some time since I felt the presence of another subject disturbing the images that fan out around me like the hallucination of an underground spring. I am its vital source. Each one of my movements unfolds outwards into seemingly infinite permutations of effect. There is vertigo in this; I stretch out around myself and watch this second, extended body of images undulate and reform in accordance with the minimal stimuli of my passage. The thousands or millions of pictures that slip past me every second are as subtle and tastefully arranged as anything that I would once have laboured on and this bright flow obscures vision totally.

I have been finding it more and more difficult these days to find the materials that I need to make things. Since eyes no longer function as they used to I use hands to feel across the surfaces of my apartment and studio. I search for anything small enough to slip into the palm and soft enough to take an impression. My tools are fingers. As I speak with you now there are a row of soft effigies set out around me on the floor. Each is at arms length from me in easy reach. They started off as figures (I wanted to make small monuments to my memories of contact) but have turned over the past few days into something more like engines. Compared to the images that flood my visual cortex they are formally impoverished and minor, and I find it difficult to draw a strong set of relations between the two.

I worry sometimes that the machines that make my images and shows for me may have found some way to also impress the soft forms that I find blindly fingering over the walls and floors of my home. How would I know then, which were the true images of the intimacies that I remember? I understand that what I used to call my taste no longer functions as a tool to make these distinctions, and so it has become a matter of faith only that these fine haptic nuances of surface tension, roughness and plasticity are truly the vectors of whatever in me remains invisible or impossible to cleanly articulate.

I am speaking to you now using the device that acts as the receiver of these flows. I do not remember it’s colour, but the form in my hands is smooth and heavy and about the right size to fit into my palm. I have tried to impress its surface like I do with the sculptures in my show but I have no tools hard enough. Certainly nails leave no impression.

I have no way of knowing if my voice will reach you, how that could even be possible, but then I do not understand how the devices work in any other way either and so perhaps a transference will take place. This would be my communion; this would be one body (what is still minor in me) attempting to translate on behalf of another, tougher form, that other extension built from light and movement. This again is a matter of faith only.

Text by Louis Mason, 2018


Paul Chapellier (b. 1989 in France) is a graduate from MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths University. He graduated from a BA in Photography at ESAI, Brussels and from a MA in Photography at Paris-8 University, Paris. He works in photography and sculpture and examines how objects survive in images and how images operate as objects, investigating advertising photography, the materiality of surfaces and spaces. He has participated in several group shows, most notably at Mains d’Œuvres and Synesthésie, Paris and had a solo show at Esp(ace), Bordeaux. 

Rachel Cheung (UK) is a graduate from MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths University. Her works follow a process of deconstruction and reconstruction to examine the concepts of hybridity and liminal states through digital 3D animation, installation and performance. Cheung’s performative aspect searches for the flow of movement in the ambiguous space in-between virtual worlds and states. She has previously exhibited and shown work in Loughborough, Leicester, Nottingham and Manchester, and now performs and exhibits in London.

Anna Mikkola is based in London and a graduate from MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths University. Her work explores the ways that technology alters human subjectivity and probes the boundaries of the human. Her research considers how interfaces and infrastructures format lived reality. Her work often materialises as videos and installations depicting narratives where different entities and points in time are woven together. Mikkila’s work has been shown in various spaces in London and elsewhere in Europe. Her work has been featured in publications such as Kaleidoscope, Rhizome and DIS Magazine. She has given talks at Goldsmiths University (London), ECAL (Lausanne) and the New Museum in NYC.

MH Sarkis (b. 1990) weaves together ideas of the female Self, the Other, the Dyad, religion, and cross-culture in a condensed approach. The result of this is a seductive yet sinister exploration into an ethereal unknown. Most recently she explores these themes, particularly alternate female futures, within a possible techno-utopia (or dystopia). Sarkis’s artwork continually crosses borders and her work hangs in public and private collections across Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. She is now based in London and is currently on the Goldsmiths University MFA Fine Art programme.