Jenna Sutela’s exhibition NO NO NSE NSE at Kunsthall Trondheim is the artist’s first major solo show at an international institution. Through Sutela’s latest series of works, including newly commissioned photograms developed specifically for this occasion, the exhibition explores artificial intelligence and in particular the relation between randomness and control in organic and inorganic systems.
Science fiction is a recurring theme in Sutela’s work. So is the quest to go beyond the limits of human-created language, both by delving into artificial intelligence and machine learning, and by turning towards technologies as shamanistic devices or possible mediums to channel alien semantics.
Sutela’s work urges us to consider other, nonhuman, species as intelligent beings, such as the Physarum polycephalum slime mould. An organism without a brain or a heart, it is nonetheless able to learn and is used, among others, to study complex human infrastructures such as the Tokyo railway network. Sutela proposes her collaboration with slime moulds as a model against anthropocentric hierarchies, to point instead to decentralised intelligence and a deep connectivity of consciousness and the material world—both living and non-living.
Her latest projects look in particular into non-deterministic models of computers and algorithms. Sutela experiments both with inserting fermenting foods into the “guts” of a computer to generate unforeseeable reactions, and with the random bubbles of lava lamps, which have lately been used to encrypt data.
For her exhibition at Kunsthall Trondheim, Sutela produced new photograms of lava lamps she created in the shape of her own head, pointing to psychedelic technologies and neuroplasticity. In Sutela’s work, technologies transcend physical and immaterial boundaries. The exhibition NO NO NSE NSE invites viewers to approach machines not as models or expansions of the human mind, but on their very own terms.
Curator: Stefanie Hessler
Assistant Curator: Katrine Elise Pedersen
A publication with new texts by Lars Bang Larsen, Stefanie Hessler, Lars TCF Holdhus, Caroline A. Jones, Allison Parrish, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Ben Vickers will be co-published by Kunsthall Trondheim, the Serpentine Galleries, and Koenig Books, and launched in Trondheim on April 22, 2020.
Thank you for the generous support to:
Thank you also to:
Anna Katharina Scheidegger
Berlin Art Glas
Kunsthall Trondheim is supported by Trondheim kommune, Trøndelag fylkeskommune and Kulturrådet.