CHASING THE SUBLIME IN THE AGE OF CRYSTAL
— 11 December 2005
Location: IMPAKT Centre for Media Culture
The sublime–in the sense of experiencing a frightening or almost supernatural beauty–is perhaps the most basic source of inspiration for the arts. Throughout the ages, artists have been driven to make paintings or tell stories by the desire for borderline experiences, for things that transcend reality or confront us instead with what is both strange and hauntingly familiar.
From the gothic novel with its fascination with the dark and mysterious to the use of psychedelics for evoking a higher state of consciousness, from paintings inspired by the overwhelming majesty of nature by artists like Caspar David Friedrich and Arnold Böcklin to the musical ecstasy in contemporary subcultures… all these art forms go back to the urge for something larger than life. But how about the ‘sublime’ at the beginning of the third millennium, in a century that will be determined by almost limitless possibilities for creating new realities, animated and true to life? This exhibition brings together various works by artists who are exploring the borderlines between nostalgia and virtuality, between romanticism and digitality.