AT THE EDGE OF CHAOS
AN ONLINE EXHIBITION CURATED BY IED FIRENZE AND IED ROMA ARTS MANAGEMENT MASTER COURSE IN COLLABORATION WITH FONDAZIONE PALAZZO STROZZI AND MANIFATTURA TABACCHI.
We live in a world of complex systems of our own creation; our cities, communication, science, society, which give us the illusion of order. Yet, as the current situation shows, our complex systems are not as effective as we like to think; at the end we are always living at the edge of chaos grasping onto the strings of order. Whether it is a pandemic crushing our economy and shaming our health systems, the sea claiming the land we have so carefully colonised, or our own neuroses undermining our lives and happiness, the chaos of the world seems to be in constant battle with our very human obsession with ordered systems. Perhaps it is exactly at this point, at the edge of chaos, that real potential is revealed, that breakthroughs occur, innovation succeeds, ways of thinking are changed and new life can grow.
This exhibition tries to examine the complex systems, considering some of their different manifestations: the collision between the human and natural world, sometimes resulting in irrevocable damage to the environment; the inter-societal interactions between humans both in reality and in the virtual, and the personal interaction between an individual and their own psyche.
The students of the Master Course in Arts Management of IED Firenze and IED Roma after just a few weeks of normal lectures, also had to develop a new perspective on the shape of their course, their exhibition and their futures. The difficulties and tribulations of online lectures, technical challenges, as well as being in different geographical locations, from Florence to Zagreb, from Brussels to Barcelona, were overcome by professors and young professionals alike. Translating what had once been meant to be a physical exhibition held in Manifattura Tabacchi to a primarily virtual online exhibition on their website, was a fascinating and challenging adjustment for everyone, from questions of online display for the curatorial team and artists, to how to attract and engage the audience through social networks by the communication and media teams.
To visualize the concept of complex systems at the edge of chaos the graphic team worked with inspirations from Tomás Saraceno’s exhibition Aria at Palazzo Strozzi to create a graphic that connected the theme and the artists thematically in an organic form. Centred around the passionate work of the artists who questioned the complex systems of their own lives in these unusual times, the complexity of modern society, as well as the conflicting coexistence of humans and nature, a program of activity in the virtual and physical location of Florence was developed to showcase a new reflection on these unusual circumstances and the potential future of exhibition making.