News from Nowhere: Chicago Laboratory

When 21 Sep 2013 - 21 Dec 2013
Where School of the Art Institute of Chicago
36 S. Wabash Avenue
Chicago, IL 60603
United States
Enquiry 312.629.6100


Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho, Avyakta, 2012, still from HD film. Courtesy of the artists and Gallery Hyundai, Seoul

September 21 – December 21, 2013
Opening reception: Friday, September 20, 6-8pm


News from Nowhere is both a stirring exhibition and an open platform for investigation of the world as it is today and as it could be imagined in the future. For this ongoing project Korean artists Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho assembled a remarkable group of thinkers and practitioners to contribute to their research exploring the meaning, social function, and the role of the arts in contemporary times. Initially presented at Documenta (13) in Kassel, Germany in 2012, News from Nowhere continues to evolve with the Chicago Laboratory as its next, expanded iteration, which is also the first US presentation of this exceptional co-generative work. The exhibition includes two films by Moon and Jeon—El Fin del Mundo and Avyakta—as well as contributions by six of the artists’ collaborators: architect Toyo Ito, fashion designers Kuho Jung and Kosuke Tsumura, mime Yu Jin Gyu, and design firms MVRDV and takram design engineering. As a laboratory, the exhibition will become a site of research and creative process, serving as a platform for lectures, workshops, performances, and other public programs that enable discourses to unfold.

Korean artists Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho will present News from Nowhere: Chicago Laboratory, an ambitious collaborative project at the Sullivan Galleries of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago opening September 20, 2013. The exhibition couples their work with that of visionary architects, designers, scientists, philosophers, and other thinkers in a massive, interdisciplinary investigation that examines the world as it is today by imagining a postapocalyptic future. Moon and Jeon’s News from Nowhere describes a world in which the human race is nearly wiped out by manmade and natural catastrophes and must relearn the most basic skills and values. As inspiration, the artists looked to the eponymous 1890 novel by the 19th-century British designer William Morris, who envisioned an agrarian worker society in which divisions among art, life, and work were erased. But here and now, when a dystopia seems possible, Moon and Jeon have sought perspectives from science, architecture, product design, engineering, philosophy, and religion, as well as the arts, for their newly expanded project. Last year, Moon and Jeon participated in Documenta (13) in Kassel, Germany and the Gwangju Biennale in Gwangju, South Korea, and received the 2012 Noon Award Grand Prize of Gwangju Biennale; 2012 Korea Artist Prize, co-organized by the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea and the SBS Foundation; and 2013 Multitude Art Prize by Multitude Foundation.

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