New Romance: Art and the Post-Human

I don’t visit museums and galleries much at all (read: almost never) so I approached the MCA expecting artworks akin to Duchamp’s Fountain – profoundly obscure high-artworks reserved for haughty cultured critics that I struggle to see the appeal of. To my surprise, the exhibition as a whole was very welcoming to one so green such as myself. Perusing through the exhibition revealed many interesting and some very bizarre artworks that highlights and makes use of modern technology to stretch the boundaries of contemporary art in very fascinating ways. The fact that many artworks were experiencing technical difficulties, or how Anna Davis calls it, “resting”, was actually quite endearing and added a touch of humanity and authenticity to the artworks.

The artwork that especially piqued my interest was EL FIN DEL MUNDO (2012) by Korean artists Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho. The premise of the short film was nothing revolutionary nor unique. In fact, the premise is quite similar to Yasuhiro Yoshiura’s short animated film PALE COCOON (2005). Both follow a post-apocalyptic world and an archivist that documents artefacts from the now defunct era. However, what I must applaud is the Korean duo’s execution of the film. EL FIN DEL MUNDO could’ve fooled me as a theatrical release as the quality of the film was astonishing. Furthermore, it managed to keep me in a state of intrigue as the film slowly unveils the links to their opposing counterpart, which is much more than I can say for PALE COCOON (I’m pretty sure I almost fell asleep watching it). Together, the two-channel film installation presents quite an interesting interpretation of what the future holds and really puts us in an existential bubble as fellow artists: “What is the point of art if the world is heading towards destruction?”.  “What is left behind” and “Can our artworks still make a difference?”




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