Risk Society— Individualization in Young Contemporary Art from Germany 01

Self-determination of the individual marks the beginning of the Western model of industrialisation and modernisation. Whether increasing social and geographical mobility, the fragmentation of traditional ways of thought and of expressing oneself or the ever increasing variety of professions: in all of these cases, further individualization goes hand in hand with the dissolution of fateful ways of thinking long taken for granted and with stronger pressure to shape one’s own life in an individual way. This poses challenges for the individual as well as for society as a whole.

As a result of these changes we nowadays must develop new forms of community and participation and also re-determine the relationship between the individual and society as a whole. Individualization is the formative process of transformation behind a large number of pressing social issues of our time. While the effects of individualization that German sociologist Ulrich Beck described in his book “Risk Society, Towards a New Modernity”, published in 1986, still referred to an emerging future, many of these effects have in the meantime become part of our daily lives.

Risk Society is a comprehensive exhibition of young German art exploring the issue of individualization. It traces the artistic response of a young German generation to the complex and multiple aspects of modern processes of individualization and their effects on society. It provides insight into the complex interaction between individual, social, political and cultural aspects of individualization. At the same time, it also takes a look at the current state of individualization and highlights future trends. The main narrative of the exhibition will be divided into four central topics, the so-called Streams. At the same time, the exhibition contextualises the issue of individualization in the changing society of Taiwan.

Risk Society— Individualization in Young Contemporary Art from Germany 02

Stream 1: Mikro – Makro / Micro – Macro

What are the consequences of the major social issues of our time on the fate of the individual? What do major global problem areas such as the financial crisis, climate change and increasing social inequality mean for the life of the individual?

Stream 2: Freisetzung und Entzauberung / Detachment and Disenchantment

Traditional family structures are disintegrating, enabling more individualized life concepts and life styles. At the same time the individual is increasingly helpless in the face of the mechanisms of the job market (working poor, temporary labor). Values and norms are redefined and defined on an individual basis. Matters of faith must be decided independently by each individual.

Stream 3: Wir sind alle Individuen / We are all individuals

In an individualized world all persons are directors of their own lives. On the one hand there is a multitude of supposed opportunities, but on the other hand there is the pressure to make decisions. Capitalist mechanisms interfere in areas of life that so far had been private. The classical employee becomes an entrepreneur on his own account, social and geographical mobility disintegrate traditional ties. The artist appears here as the prototype of the flexible capitalist entrepreneur.

Stream 4: Reintegration / New models of collaboration

Apart from the disintegration of social structures that so far had stood firm and apart from the loss of importance of conventional social organizations in democratic societies, new forms of cooperation also emerge. Communication in society assumes new forms through the internet. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter generate new opportunities of getting politically organized demand new forms of social engagement and conflict management.

About the exhibition

Duration: 14 Sep – 10 Nov 2013

Venue: MOCA Taipei

Curator: Melanie Bono

Artists: Alicja Kwade, Anna Witt, Björn Dahlem, DAS INSTITUT, David Jablonowski, Fiete Stolte, Florian Slotawa, FORT, Jan Brokof, Katinka Bock, Manuel Graf, Matthias Fritsch, Matthias Gommel, Michael Beutler, Michael Sailstorfer, Mirjam Thomann, Paul Wiersbinki, Rebecca Ann Tess, Stefan Marx, Sven Johne, Ulf Aminde

Opening hours: Thu-Sun 10:00-18:00

Price: NTD50

Tel: 886-2-25523721

Add: 39 changan West Road, Taipei City, Taiwan

Courtesy of the artists and MOCA Taipei, for further information please visit www.mocataipei.org.tw.

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