- Rachael Rakes
We seem to live in proto-end times, in which the future is apprehended and transmitted in pessimistic rather than hopeful terms. In the wake of the twentieth century’s continuous human catastrophes of war, ongoing economic crisis, and environmental devastation, the experience of the twenty-first century has been conditioned by the recurring knowledge of imminent disaster. Neither the monuments that were previously created to caution societies against repeating the past nor today’s frequent warnings of future decline have had significant effect on historical-cultural currents of repetition and despair.
Might reassessing conceptions of time and the present help shift the sense of inevitable, cyclical destruction? The future will never arrive brings together works of art that collect elements of time and history to imagine such fragments as emergent possibilities, thereby extending their life, even as the present unfolds. Through strategies of temporal disjuncture, capture, recomposition, and reenactment, they demonstrate how the image and the object can trigger historical presence. These artists consider how the subject can carry history, how timeless monuments can be made of everyday objects, and how dominant modes of recollection short-circuit presence and future change. The exhibition further positions the image as a conduit of time-travel that has the power to reform our experience and consideration of the present.