Preview days: April 21–22
Calle Donà 2737/f
COOKIE COOKIE, the exhibition CryptoZR (Liu Jiaying) and I, Li Zhenhua, presented in 2021, has been updated to COOKIE COOKIE 2.0 for Venice. Unfortunately, the artist cannot be present due to the pandemic. Even though Europe is absorbed with war and nuclear deterrents and the pandemic is still ongoing, we will open the show in Venice on April 21, 2022.
“…the representation of bodies and their metamorphoses; the relationship between individuals and technologies; the connection between bodies and the Earth.” —Cecilia Alemani. Humanity has always created more ties that bind, based on a given region, religion, or family relationship. These bonds shape how we distinguish people from one another and the methods. How do they create organic connections between underlying protocols and contemporary ideologies? This thing called the “metaverse” is another concentration of people like that.
Is it technology, community, or something else? If we accept all change as a precondition for the working of the world since Karl Marx discussed the alienation of people from the economy, then what is still so strange or unintelligible? We accept everything about the present, which also includes climate change, other people, breakfasts and refrigerators, unfamiliar objects, and the machinations of fate, but there will always be people who ask: Why do humans exist? Following the current path, people are cogs in socialism, or frantic workers in Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Times.
In order to explore autonomy, consciousness, and introspection, as well as rational explanations for conflicts between people, humans invented religion, theology, philosophy, psychology, sociology, law, and numerous related professions, all of which have continued to evolve. All of this shapes the several contradictions in and aspects of CryptoZR’s art. In Red and Blue, the artist discusses how a work of art is made amidst the shift from images to community participation in politics and the connections made between anonymous users through blockchain and web technologies; it is a more direct and real exploration of communities and transactions. Motivations, gains, games, and ideologies make up an interesting whole.
Small Goal, Greed Is Good, Top Bidder, and other smart contract applications can be seen as web-based performances, but interaction with the work does not require traditional art system intermediaries, such as museums, art institutions, and other physical spaces. The works are made online, but they are then transplanted into multiple forms in offline space, including concept, action, and design. CryptoZR’s work challenges both the new frameworks for online community, technology, and psychology and the new possibilities for physical spaces and artistic ideas.
CryptoZR’s CHIJIN was constructed in Cryptovoxels, and everything in the virtual community is built on a crypto wallet. The interactions between the space, architecture, and avatar create something that connects the real and virtual worlds. A complete virtual reality infrastructure and a crypto wallet off er an entrance to the metaverse. However, humans cannot yet move at will between the real and the virtual like in The Matrix or Ghost in the Shell. CryptoZR’s work is about ways of transforming science fiction and imagination into the present reality and constantly adjusting the applicable scope for humans and technologies. Since its emergence, the internet has continued to produce new subject matter, including discussions and explorations of gender, culture, region, and community. Anonymization, AI, surveillance, VPNs, and other realities that have arisen from technology, as well as the dark web and Wikileaks, comprise an alternate storyline in the offline world.
CryptoZR’s work is based on community, focused on connections between people. When extended to individuals and technologies, or to bodily metamorphoses, perhaps we should accept all of this and re-evaluate how people should get along in a modern society? What exists between people? How should people learn and play in those interactions? Perhaps in CryptoZR’s artistic explorations, we can glimpse narratives of multiple parallel worlds, or another kind of intelligence.
Artist CryptoZR (Liu Jiaying)
CryptoZR (Liu Jiaying) previously served as Chief Product Designer of Global SNS in the international business department at Tencent headquarters. In 2016, she was accepted to the master’s degree program at the Central Academy of Fine Arts. During her postgraduate period, the artist began using fundamental blockchain technology to explore a unique artistic language. In 2017, CryptoZR founded the blockchain company ProChain Foundation in Singapore, with products including: Prabox (first in EOS ecological traffic), TopBidder (top ten in EOS ecological traffic), and DeFi product YFII which currently ranks 68th in global crypto market value. YFII was also listed on three major crypto exchanges: OKEX, Huobi and Binance. Due to her active involvement in the foundation of blockchain, CryptoZR took a break from school for one year in 2019 before obtaining her master’s degree from the Central Academy of Fine Arts the following year.
Curator Li Zhenhua
Li Zhenhua (b. 1975, Beijing) currently works between Zurich, Berlin and Hong Kong. Active in the contemporary art field since 1996, his practice primarily involves curation, art creation and project management. Li is the Film curator at Art Basel Hong Kong (since 2014) and has been the nominator for the Sommerakademie im Zentrum Paul Klee and the Prix Pictet in Switzerland. He once served as a member of the international advisory board for the exhibition Digital Revolution (2014) at the Barbican Centre in the United Kingdom, recently he was a juror for the Korean Cultural Center’s Open Call 2021 and the DAAD’s fi lm residency 2022. Li has participated in the BEUYS 2021’s Voices 2021. Zhenhua has edited several artists’ publications, including Yan Lei: What I Like to Do (Documenta13, 2012), Feng Mengbo: Journey to the West (2010), Hu Jieming: One Hundred Years in One Minute (2010), and Yang Fudong: Dawn Mist, Separation Faith (2009) among others. A collection of his art reviews was published under the title Text in 2013. He won Curator of the Year from Art Power 100 (2014), Curator of the Year from TANC Asia Prize (2015), and The Regional Contemporary Art Project, INNOVATION Prize, Russia from the 3rd Ural Industrial Biennale of Contemporary Art (2016).
Source of this article: April 21–November 23, 2022