Conflict in My Outlook: We Met Online

Conflict in My Outlook: We Met Online

21 August–01 March 2022

The University of Queensland Art Museum, Brisbane, Australia | Website

The Internet has been variously described as a cloud, a network, an archive, an information superhighway, a urinal, a supermarket, and a brothel. All are at once fitting and failed analogies. Within our hyper-mediated world, we are drowning in an ocean of images, data is the new oil, and we have entered into a new age of surveillance capitalism.

Featuring Australian and international artists, Conflict in My Outlook is a major exhibition that will unfold in two chapters across 2020 and 2021. The first, We Met Online (June 2020), investigates the way the Internet mediates and shapes social relations and ideas. It reveals the erosion of boundaries between online and offline, public and private. It foregrounds the Internet as a source of both human connection and societal division, illuminating the precarious nature of reality in an era of fake news, post-truth politics, and echo chambers of disinformation.

Across a series of new commissions and existing projects, artists harness the Internet and its contents to consider the world in which we live. They co-opt and remix user-generated content sourced from video blogs or social media platforms, they employ geolocation technologies, and they explore Augmented Reality filters, Virtual Reality environments, and data visualisation.

A ‘conflict in outlook’ describes a glitch, an error message or a scheduling clash. It suggests a sense of cognitive dissonance or a failure to connect via email. A phrase lifted from the ubiquitous software program Microsoft Office, this exhibition frames a complexity of social relations and power dynamics in our post-Internet age – a time when every aspect of our lives has been irrevocably changed.

Artists: Zach Blas & Jemima Wyman, Natalie Bookchin, Xanthe Dobbie, Kate Geck, Matthew Griffin, Daniel McKewen, Elisa Giardina Papa
Curator: Anna Briers