Cosmopolis #1.5: Enlarged Intelligence, opening November 2 in Chengdu, Sichuan Province in south-west China, presents artworks and programs by almost 60 artists and groups, exploring ecology, technology and the commons, and envisioning how we today may draw on intelligent technologies, as well as on ecological intelligence, to advance social values—rather than leaving capital to largely define the uses of these techniques and knowledge systems.
Fostering a speculative approach rooted in conceptual thinking and creative experimentation, the project includes artist residencies, concerts, talks, and educational programs taking place across multiple venues in Chengdu and in nearby Jiajiang County. Cosmopolis #1.5 is curated by Kathryn Weir, with associate curator Ilaria Conti and curatorial advisor Zhang Hanlu.
The Cosmopolis platform was launched by the Centre Pompidou in 2016 to highlight research-based creative practices that are rooted in a particular context yet engage in international conversations, reflecting on cultural translation and the situatedness of knowledge. The first two-year cycle, centered on collaboration and collective practice, culminated in the exhibition Cosmopolis #1: Collective Intelligence (Centre Pompidou, 2017).
Cosmopolis #1.5: Enlarged Intelligence is the second major exhibition associated with the platform. Stemming from the current cycle of research, the project engages with urban and rural space, and the shifts in the dynamic between them due to the digital economy and other technological, ecological, and cultural transformations. The cosmotechnical theory of philosopher Yuk Hui, presenting “the unification of the cosmos and the moral through technical activities, whether craft-making or art-making,” has informed the project through its re-envisioning of technology within specific historical and cultural contexts.
Cosmopolis #1.5 is fully supported by the Mao Jihong Arts Foundation and the city of Chengdu.