This Thursday Liverpool’s FACT launched its latest exhibition, No Such Thing as Gravity.
The exhibition aims to “enlarge and challenge our ideas about scientific discovery” through collaborating artists and scientists who address controversial issues in their field. The collection explores different areas of science through asking questions about conspiracy theories such as: how does one make a ghost? Notions of religion and spirituality are also questioned, for example: when can you definitively say that something is dead – or alive – on a cellular level?
The exhibition consists of pieces of art that merge with scientific experiments which enable us to fully experience new technologies and understand alternative views of science. These interesting and controversial topics make the exhibition both truly beautiful and fascinating.
The exhibition opened on Thursday, marked by a ‘Day of Collisions’. I was lucky enough to attend two of the events marking the opening of the exhibition held that day: ‘Voyage: A session for remembering with Nahum Mantra’ and the ‘Roy Stringer Memorial Lecture with Will Self’.
The ‘voyage’ was an extremely interesting experience as Mantra used hypnotism to transport us from the gallery into outer space. We were led in a guided meditation in which we were encouraged to become distanced from ourselves and reality by concentrating on being conscious in the space between being awake and asleep. I found it to be a very strange experience as at some points I felt overwhelmingly relaxed. I thoroughly enjoyed it and came out of the session extremely happy. At the end we were asked to talk about our experience and I found those in the group that appeared to be more accustomed to meditation experienced much more profound effects than me, such as one lady thought she saw Jesus, which was very peculiar to her. This event really set the tone for the exhibition as one that has no boundaries when exploring science through typically unscientific fields.
This was followed by the lecture with Will Self, novelist and political commentator. The lecture was extremely controversial, however very interesting. He claimed that there is no relationship between science and art (contrary to the entire exhibition), that science has “won” over art and that “art is shit nowadays”. However, it was extremely interesting to hear his opinion and the backlash he got from the audience full of scientists and artists who completely disagreed with everything he said.
This exhibition offers a huge selection of artworks, all of which explore different areas of science and art: Sarah Sparke’s work deals with ghosts, while Gina Czarnecki & John Hunt’s work makes use of 3D printing technology in which individuals can have their faces scanned, printed and added to the exhibition. Also on offer are the ‘Do Something! Saturdays’ hosted by FACT where every other Saturday (excluding the Christmas holidays) there is the chance to explore different elements of art-making and experimentation which delve deeper into the themes of the exhibition.
No Such Thing as Gravity is on display at FACT until the 5th February 2017.
For more information about the exhibition and all it encompasses, please visit: http://www.fact.co.uk/projects/no-such-thing-as-gravity.aspx?when=today