How to Connect in the Age of Digital Humanity?

Through smartphones and social media, we were promised that staying in touch would become easier than ever before. Now, everyone is within reach, from close family to distant acquaintances and strangers. But somehow we feel increasingly lonely and disconnected. From 22 March until 19 May 2024, the IMPAKT exhibition In Touch explores forms of connection in times of digital humanity, by presenting a collection of artworks reconsidering the role of technology in forming networks and facilitating relationships.

Since the early days of broadcast and mass media, technological devices have taken up more space in our lives. Now, by following our loved ones on social media, tracking our well-being through apps, and trusting our phone to navigate us through familiar and unfamiliar environments, our devices have shifted our attention from our surroundings to the screen, turning the apparatus from a tool that communicates the world to us, to the world itself. These developments call for an updated relational landscape.

As we are now finding ourselves in a world where our contact with others, humans and non-humans, is established and maintained mainly through technology, it is important to explore how this relationship we have with technology rewrites our ways of connecting, and forms alternate, networked subjectivities. Through immersive and playful works, In Touch reflects on the ways technology supports and interferes with forming connections with ourselves, other humans, our surroundings, and other species: from returning to nature through technology and creating connections through mediated worlds, to using technology to gain more insights into our relationships. Attend a dinner event hosted by AI, explore what human social behaviour has in common with plants and insects, and help create counter-narratives to gender biases, by talking to a feminist chat bot.

With artworks by: Studio Above&Below, Nadja Verena Marcin, Paula Nishijima, Me AndOther Me, and T(N)C

Curated by: Daniela Tenenbaum

With support from: City of Utrecht, Creative Industries Fund NL, Mondriaan Fund, and the Creative Europe Culture Programme of the European Union.