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Versions is the essential guide to virtual reality and beyond. It investigates the rapidly deteriorating boundary between the real world and the one behind the screen. Versions launched in 2016 at the eponymous conference dedicated to creativity and VR with the New Museum’s incubator NEW INC.

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A London art exhibition is confronting the fetishization of our online lives

sacredscreen
A London art exhibition is confronting the fetishization of our online lives

The screen is sacred. Arguably, too sacred. When separated from our computers or smartphones, it’s not uncommon to feel a tinge of anxiety. Like something’s suddenly missing from our lives; a gaping hole in the space that was once filled in your heart by needless, incessant scrolling. At an upcoming exhibit at the Square Gallery London, eight artists are taking part in a group exhibition to confront the “fetishization” of the world wide web, and it’s called The Sacred Screen.

gala
Bex Ilsey, “Your Cities Will Shine Forever.”

Featuring artists Corie Denby McGowan, Col Self, Bex Ilsley, Parker Day, Bob Bicknell-Knight, Christina Poku, and Gala Bell, and curated by the gallery’s founder Morgane Wagner and contemporary moving image artist Corie Denby McGowan, the work in the exhibition deals heavily with all things online. And if physical, like a performance, how the digital finds itself related to it. The Sacred Screen will feature performances, paintings, digital works, and above all else: virtual reality.

corie
A work by Corie Denby McGowan.

Not all the works exist in the realm of VR, but a few utilize the technology to confront the troubling online and social media space. Artist Bex Ilsey’s “Your Cities Will Shine Forever” hosts a combination of a physical installation (a wall-mounted iridescent, 3D-printed mask) and a digital experience (via the Samsung Gear VR) for a single joint piece. Others confront the idea of virtual reality, and our terrified natural aversion to it, according to Dazed. Regardless of each artist’s chosen medium, the works find themselves unified over spotlighting the disturbing pervasiveness of our online parallel worldswhether their confrontation of it is via parody or introspection, or even a little bit of both.

The Sacred Screen will be open from January 12th to January 19th at the Square Gallery London in London, U.K..

All images courtesy of The Sacred Screen.

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