After successfully delivering two exhibitions in Ljubljana in 2017 and 2018, Fotopub Association continued its work in the Ljubljana location now renamed Fotopub Project Space. A series of five exhibition was showcased in the first season of 2019 in this abandoned Petrol gas station that had been designed as part of a comprehensive project to develop the northern entry to the Ljubljana city center. It was built in 1968 and designed by architect Milan Mihelič, recipient of the Prešeren Award, the highest decoration in the field of artistic creation in Slovenia, who also happened to be famous architect Edvard Ravnikar's pupil. Since the first presentation of the gas station as a project space in June of 2017 with an exhibition showcasing a project by Taiyo Onorato and Nico Krebs, Fotopub uses the space to explore direct dialogue between space, artist and technician through site-specific installations.
Fotopub Project Space
Upcoming exhibition: Jenny From The Block
Ed Fornieles, Simon Denny, Jaya Klara Brekke, Rafal Zajko, Harm van den Dorpel, Jure Kastelic, Jonas Lund, Omsk Social Club, Justice Thélot, LightningK0ala; curated by: Špela Pipan
Opening: After Corona
Blockchain is a digital database, that stores and verifies data in a way that is impossible to forge. It establishes a completely new way of understanding digital information, by creating an environment in which a digital file can be unique. Although we are relatively familiar with this technology in relation to cryptocurrencies, it still remains fairly misunderstood. Shrouded in mystery from the very beginning, this “magical and mystical” technology carries with it an aspect of techno-utopianism, as well as fears of a technocratic future. The possibilities of its implementation in other sectors or even on a governmental level are endless, with some already in place, leading us to question who controls the metrics? The main motivation for the use of blockchain technologies in any sector is, in fact, the decentralization of power structures in a distributed system which increases the agency of its users. Nevertheless, would a blockchain future indeed distribute power or would it only reinforce existing inequalities?
The exhibition Jenny form the Block introduces a narrative environment, set in a fictionalized future where blockchain technology already governs various aspects of life. The narration of this fictive state is related from the perspective of a governmental employee Jenny, a disenfranchised cultural worker, who started to obsessively analyze the effects of this technology in secrecy. At first glance, humorous in its worldbuilding the exhibition touches upon significant issues related to the use of blockchain within art and culture through the exhibited artworks. Avoiding finite answers/claims it offers an examination of this subject in tentative ways, highlighting both its positive and negative aspects. The exhibition touches upon issues of automated social relations, the creation of self-regulated social (art) groups, predictive digital content algorithms, predictive (art) market value anonymity, pseudonymity, and surveillance. It questions who is defining the metrics of these distributed systems and explores the categorization of knowledge and objects, within this new techno-cultural landscape.