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Synthetic Folklore

Janek Simon - Synthetic Folklore
This monographic catalogue maps and decodes fifteen years of an artistic practice oriented towards DIY strategies and new technologies, investigating manifold spaces of reflections with a powerful political and theoretical radicality.
Janek Simon is not only an artist and occasional curator, he is also an anarchist, programmer, craftsman, intellectual, social organizer, traveler, and former junior champion of the card game bridge. He likes to say that he is interested in too many things, from globalization, political geography, artificial intelligence, digital materialism, algorithmic governance, financial speculation, and DIY strategies, to postcolonial theories within Eastern Europe and Gombrowicz-like dilemmas on what Polish identity actually is. Simon's work captivates both visually and intellectually and is driven by constant curiosity, erudition, and the quest for what he calls “synthetic folklore”—the question of how to cherish what is particular while constructing a planetary value system with the use of new technologies.
Published following the eponymous exhibition at Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw, from February 22 to May 19, 2019.
Polish artist Janek Simon (born 1977, lives and works in Warsaw) gets inspired by scientific theories and models as well as such disciplines like geography or economics whose functions and specifics are subject to constant civilization changes. Simon's objects often take a form of visualizations based on mathematical formulas and statistical data. At the same time, experimental and anarchical dimension of his works articulates clash between scientific theories and reality of everyday life, sociological phenomena and politics. Many of his art pieces contain complex electronic systems created according to the Do it Yourself philosophy—made from scratch by the artist, who consciously keeps on searching for practices and strategies alternative to the contemporary culture of mass production and prevailing system of artistic production.
Edited by Joanna Warsza.
Contributions by Inke Arns, Max Cegielski, Ekaterina Degot, Łukasz Gorczyca, Nav Haq, Virginija Januškevičiūtė, Nina Katchadourian, Joanna Kordjak, Pablo Larios, Małgorzata Ludwisiak, Lev Manovich, Daniel Muzyczuk, Sina Najafi, Lech Nowicki, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Agnieszka Polska, Aleksandra Przegalińska, Mohammad Salemy, Sumesh Sharma, Janek Simon, Jan Sowa, Joanna Warsza.

Graphic design: Jakub de Barbaro.

Published with Ujazdowski Castle Center for Contemporary Art, Warsaw.
published in June 2020
English edition
16,3 x 22,7 cm (hardcover)
236 pages (100 color ill.)
ISBN : 978-3-95679-510-7
EAN : 9783956795107
in stock

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