The Council

3 April - 30 April 2017
The Council

Residency by Frederik De Wilde

The Council is inspired by August Rodin’s famous sculpture “The Thinker,” which portrays a nude male figure in deep contemplation. Belgian artist Frederik De Wilde wondered: “What is The Thinker thinking NOW? How would a 21st Century Thinker look, feel and think like?”

These seemingly simple questions gave rise to The Council.

The Council is an artistic installation that consists of a post-contemporary Thinker sculpture equipped with ‘artificial brains,’ presenting us a glimpse of its ‘private,’ yet hyperconnected, metaphysical musings, corrupted memories, digital ruins, uncertain spaces and vectors of thought by the means of image and sound.

De Wilde’s Thinker is surrounded by 38 screens, each connected to a Raspberry Pi’s running custom code, -acting like neurons and synapses in the brain-, mounted on Nero Marquina marble pedestals. The installation runs custom pixel sorting algorithms exposing the nature of digital images (i.e. pixels) and how easily we can manipulate them, a mesh network and custom code, mining for example, post-contemporary ruins like e-waste mountains.

In as much The Council is an odysseus through World Wide Web, Deep Web or a descend into the heart of Darknet, it is primarily created as an access point for the viewers minds, feelings and thoughts. Hence, the key element to ‘unlock’ De Wilde’s Thinker is the specta(c)tor which lies at the heart of The Council.

‘It is the age of resynthesising the past into a 'perfect' (neo-)future has begun. Cultural artefacts, images, data, ... are the new gold. Machines will delve it, we'll consume it till all blurs. Past, present and future will melt into each other.’ - Artist Frederik De Wilde in conversation with curator Philippe Riss, 30-12-2016


Concept: Frederik De Wilde
Excavator of Digital Artefacts: Pieter Heremans

'The Council' will be presented at HyperPavilion, an exhibition which will be held in Venice from May 13 to October 30 2017, during the 57th Venice Biennale in Arsenale Nord.
HyperPavilion is produced by Fabulous Inc and curated by Philippe Riss-Schmidt.