as featured in ‘SOFT_WARE Textiles after Technology’ at Kunsthaus Erfurt
04.09.2020 – 23.10.2020
We are pleased to present an ONLINE exhibition of works by Leah Emery & Paul Yore alongside their inclusion in a group exhibition at Kunsthaus Erfurt this September.
This exhibition of international artists presents textile works that engage with hyperconsumerism, internet culture and the post-digital, and superseded technologies that have gained new resonance in our immaterial digital ether. This exhibition is not the first to note that textiles have exploded in contemporary art. What it does ask is why textiles are the current medium of choice for artists to dissect the digital age.
The similarities between textiles and digital technologies are uncannily pronounced. Parallels begin with the language of the medium: grid, network, web, thread. The genesis of digital terminology is the language of the loom. Thus, a return to this very apparatus, the loom as a symbol for textile craft, aids in grappling with the nature of our digital existence and digital technology comes full circle. From soft to hard technologies and back again, textiles are not an oppositional force, but relative to the digital on a spectrum of textile tactility and digital intangibility.
SOFT_WARE counters what the digital realm has widely forfeited: touch and texture. The digital mirroring of textile methods that underpin the concept and structure of the internet is refracted back from the virtual realm by young contemporary artists who have grown up parallel to its inception. That the punch card system used in operating the jacquard loom is regarded as the conceptual predecessor to computing technology is only a rather ironic beginning. The seven millennial artists explore how and why the very medium that spurned the digital’s historical advent, textiles, so aptly serves as the postdigital medium and message to unpick it. Meaning is both inscribed and derived through the inherent tactile nature of textiles as they forefront a post-digital consciousness in contemporary art.’
SOFT_WARE is curated by David Ashley Kerr and Sarah Crowe.