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6 March – 28 May 2018
Ian Cheng (b. 1984, USA) explores the nature of mutation and the capacity of humans to relate to change. Drawing on principles of video game design, improvisation, and cognitive science, Cheng has developed “live simulations”, living virtual ecosystems that begin with basic programmed properties, but are left to self-evolve without authorial intent or end. His simulations model the dynamics of imaginative organisms and objects, but with the unforgiving causality found in nature. What results is a cascade of emergent behaviours the artist can manage but never truly control. Cheng likens his simulations to a “neurological gym”: a format for viewers to deliberately exercise feelings of confusion, anxiety, and cognitive dissonance that accompany the experience of unrelenting change.
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