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Universal / Remote: Exploring Post-Pandemic Society Through Contemporary Art

Exhibition in Tokyo Examines Global Capitalism and Digital Future

Universal / Remote
March 6–June 3, 2024

In a world transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Art Center, Tokyo, presents “Universal / Remote,” an exhibition that delves into the responses of contemporary art to the unprecedented challenges and changes of recent years. Through thought-provoking works by internationally renowned artists, the exhibition invites viewers to reflect on the state of the individual, the complexities of global capitalism, and the possibilities for a post-pandemic society.

The exhibition is divided into two parts: “Constant Growth at a Pan-Global Scale” and “The Remote Individual.” While the concepts of “Universal” and “Remote” may appear contradictory, they are explored as interconnected mirrors reflecting the tension between global capitalism and the isolated, digital experiences of individuals. The artworks address the profound impact of surveillance, technology, and the shift towards a digital future on human society.

Despite being created before the pandemic, many of the featured artworks resonate deeply with the experiences of the past three years. They confront the absurdities of excessive surveillance and the profound isolation of individuals within complex systems, highlighting the relevance of contemporary art in understanding and interpreting the current era and envisioning a post-COVID world.

Universal / Remote” showcases a diverse range of artistic mediums, including video art, photography, and installations. Visitors will encounter works by renowned artists such as Xu Bing, Hito Steyerl, Trevor Paglen, Evan Roth, Tina Enghoff, and Jeamin Cha, among others. The exhibition also features ambitious contributions from Japanese artists Maiko Jinushi, Daisuke Ida, and Natsuko Kiura, including new works created specifically for this exhibition.

Through its exploration of contemporary art’s responses to the pandemic, “Universal / Remote” offers a platform for critical reflection on the complexities of our interconnected world and the possibilities for a more just and equitable future. The exhibition invites viewers to engage with thought-provoking ideas and foster a deeper understanding of the profound changes shaping our society.

The National Art Center, Tokyo (NACT)
7-22-2 Roppongi, Minato-ku
Tokyo 106-8558
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