Bulloch, Pryde

Sky, Rocks & Digits
Hong Kong  6 November 2020 - 9 January 2021
Concerned with the interplay between bodies and technology, both artists explore the historic and ongoing significance of technological mediation and what that produces, enables or prohibits.

Simon Lee Gallery is pleased to present Sky, Rocks & Digits, a joint exhibition of works by Berlin-based artists Angela Bulloch and Josephine Pryde. Concerned with the interplay between bodies and technology, both artists explore the historic and ongoing significance of technological mediation and what that produces, enables or prohibits.

The ambiguity of the word ‘digits’ - signifying fingers, numerals or data - provides a point of entry to a central theme in Bulloch’s practice: the use of technology to navigate the world, from a vast, universal perspective, to the small human scale of the artist’s fingertip. In Never Ending with iPad (2015) a stack of geometric units, conceived and designed using 3D imaging, has anthropomorphic proportions; crowned with a tablet installed with the video game Monument Valley, the sculpture invites its audience to become active participants in both the game and the artwork. In her Night Sky works, Bulloch recreates remote constellations as observed from various positions within the universe. Similarly to the sculptures, these twinkling installations explore the slippage between realms of the real and the virtual as we experience first-hand that which is fundamentally inaccessible without the aid of advanced technologies.

Read more
Installation Views
Selected Works
Text by David Bussel

Bulloch, Pryde 

Sky, Rocks & Digits


At the present juncture, how do we think through the relations between ‘bodies’ and technology? What are ‘bodies’ anyway and how are they produced? Are they post-human ensembles, individualised producers and consumers caught up in polarising, automated cybernetic loops? Potential data resources to be extracted and instrumentalised for control, surveillance and profit? Or are they material abstractions ­– contested historical, social and discursive formations that can never be posited as universally given or absolute? And what about ‘bodies’ as a political form, ones that are precarious and ones that are valorised – which ‘bodies’ have access to subjecthood and which are surplus to it and why? What do the material conditions of the relations between subjects and technology actually produce, enable or foreclose? What if we reframe this question by looking at the historical relations between ‘bodies’ and machines (subjection), between organisms and mechanisms, or tools and language (autonomy)? Are these relations processes of ‘machinic assemblage’, analogous entities or antagonistic forces? From a different perspective, how do the mediations, triggers or activations between subjects and technology like screens and coding, algorithms, AI and machine learning remain invisible yet still material forms? What is the history of technology, who produces it and for whom? Is the Internet the new cosmos and our devices our only sensorium? Where does all the energy come from and where does it go?

What happens to time and space when these relations become fluid or disjunctive, that is, appear timeless and placeless, without distance? How do they configure perception, the senses and movement? Indeed, how do they organise being, being oneself and being together, in other words, how do they individuate subjects singularly and collectively, as intersecting and contradictory modes of subjection, such as race, class and gender, and modes of production (economy), under subsumptive capitalist relations? And what about the social order, society? Is there a split between ‘reality’ on one side and ‘the imaginary’ on the other or are these modes of abstraction mutually generative and only appear mutually exclusive, natural and coherent? What are the biopolitical systems, rules and discourses that embed us in these very relations and how and why do we abide by them? What happens when they are de-administrated, discontinued or suspended in ‘states of exception’? As so-called rational and faithful entrepreneurs of the self, why do we, as so-called human capital,  work so much by ‘sharing’ so much, that is, share our paradoxically de-skilled social knowledge as the primary form of (affective) immaterial and manual labour itself? Is this a kind of ‘passionate servitude’, an internalised, negative instance of belonging and division, as we are urged and bound by our desires to survive as much as by our fears that we won’t?

Can we divest from and dis-align with these overdetermined forces and relations, with these ‘machinic assemblages’, and instead, construct a social body without a telos, fugitively occupying other kinds of relations, ‘other scenes’, like an emancipatory collective life, today?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        


Receive information on available works by these artists