Connect With Us Nov 16 – Jan 19 2019 von Bartha, Basel
Von Bartha is pleased to present their third solo exhibition from Copenhagen-based art collective SUPERFLEX, running from 16 November 2018 to 19 January 2019. Taking its title from the slogan of Falcon bank – the first in the world to trade with bitcoin – the exhibition explores the significance and effect of cryptocurrencies and data within our global economy.
Connect With Me is a sculptural work initially perceived as five abstract blue steel objects. Each have a certain viewpoint in which they appear as graphs. The graphs depict segments of the fluctuating value of Bitcoin during an 18 month period which contained the largest peak of value so far.
Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency to be released into the market in 2009 and is to date the largest of more than a 1000 cryptocurrencies. Based on a mathematical principle of decentralised and distributed ledger, the digital currencies allow for – in theory – unrestricted and free transactions, characteristics appealing to both anarchistic and neoliberal agendas.
In a paradoxical way, Connect With Me translates the intangible substance of cryptocurrencies into sculptures by giving form to the only non-metaphorical image we have of them: progress over time. When initially viewed the sculptres present as modernist, minimal art object. Seen from a bird’s-eye view the motive reveals itself as an image familiar from the world of economics.
The title suggests a personal invitation to join, to connect, to participate, but by whom and to what remain unclear. As an altered version of the slogan of a private bank it underlines the suggestive language of capitalism, and how we simultaneously experience intimacy as well as a commodified reality every day. Perhaps it is an invitation to a future dream of utopian freedom, perhaps to a capitalistic nightmare. Perhaps to both at the same time.