Science Fiction: New Death exhibition at FACT – humans over-reliance on technology will lead to our destruction

Posted on 14 April 2014
By Ashleigh Panther
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FACT often features highly stylised exhibitions throughout it’s galleries and Science Fiction: New Death is no exception.

Focusing on the impact that technology has on our everyday lives, Science Fiction: New Death explores how we have become extremely narcissistic, that our destruction will not be through extra terrestrial beings attacking Earth, but through our own self obsession and through over-reliance on technology.

Filled with pieces from a variety of artists, as well as a script from the award winning China Mieville, you are invited to walk through a series of pieces that fit together as a story, each expressing the message of how technology has come to take over our lives.

In FACT’s foyer by the entrance to the ground floor gallery, there is a chance for you to get interactive with the exhibition, through the use of a trampoline and a camera.

Designed to give you the image of floating through space, a camera will snap a picture of you mid-air, projecting it onto the wall, perhaps not one for shy visitors.

As you enter the gallery, you are given the sensation of entering a portal through a large white door and a gush of warm air.

The pieces are then dotted around a white maze, as you walk round, the walls are full of inoperable doors, making the space feel uneasy and unfamiliar.

New Death has been innovatively conceived as a destructed film in which the curators play the role of the director, artists that of the actors, and the gallery itself becomes the set upon which the story unfolds.

Downstairs there are pieces that focus on our political future and the effect of social media on our relationships and behaviour through a series of short films and images, including a defaced portrait of Margaret Thatcher.

Upstairs is a little bit more daunting with pieces from artists such as Jae Rhim Lee who focuses on how we can make the decomposition of our bodies easier after we die through the use of minute fungi, complete with a fungi laced ‘corpse’ hanging from the wall, addressing an issue that we tend to shun away from the light.

If you have ever wanted to feel the sheer terror that comes over the actors in science fiction movies, when they are hiding in a space that is quickly being intruded by a strange being, then Accomplice by Petra Gemeinboek and Rob Saunders is not to be missed.

This piece features a large wall, with two robots on the other side slowly making their way through the wall by punching tiny holes in the space.

‘If the audience is present, the robots watch and follow onlookers through the space, in order to enhance their knowledge and alleviate their own ‘boredom’.

This piece deals with the issue that technology is growing ever smarter, learning new skills and becoming more independent from human interaction.

With lots of other pieces to explore, this exhibition is not one to be missed for all science fiction lovers.

Although it may be slightly confusing to those who don’t share a love for the genre, the messages behind some of the pieces about how our way of life is changing, and some would say not for the better, are extremely powerful and will resonate with you long after you leave.

Science Fiction: New Death runs at FACT until the 22nd June 2014, for more information visit