HEXEN2.0/Literature is a new solo exhibition by Suzanne Treister. Treister's HEXEN2.0 project is an expansive cross-media investigation into the interwoven histories of government mass control systems, technological and scientific discovery, behavioural theory and countercultural movements, and diverse philosophical, literary and political responses to advances in technology such as the rise of cybernetics and the Internet. HEXEN2.0 takes as its starting point the seminal Macy Conferences, New York, 1946–53, whose primary goal was to set the foundations for a general science of the workings of the human mind.
HEXEN2.0/Literature is the 'bibliographical' component of HEXEN2.0: a series of beautifully detailed drawings of reversed book covers, exhibited here for the first time. These key texts act as portals into Treister's intricate and highly energised research into actual events, people, histories and scientific projections of the future. Treister's 'reading list' has no clear entry or exit point, bringing into close contact titles such as Timothy Leary's Info-Psychology, 1977; Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, 1953; and Jacques Ellul's The Technological Society, 1967. Once deciphered, the reversed covers denote the claims of Anarcho-Primitivism and Post-Leftism, Theodore Kaczynski/the Unabomber, Techno-Gaianism and Transhumanism, and position precursory ideas such as those of Thoreau, Warren, Heidegger and Adorno in relation to visions of utopian and dystopian futures from science fiction in literature and film.
The exhibition also includes a continuous screening programme of videos relating to HEXEN2.0's precursor, HEXEN 2039, which imagined new technologies for psychological warfare through exploring links between the military and the paranormal. The programme includes: HEXEN 2039 The Movie, 2006; Operation Swanlake, 2004; Crossing, 2005; and Over The Line, 2008-2010.
A pioneer in the digital and web-based field from the beginning of the 1990s, Suzanne Treister uses various media including video, the Internet, photography, drawing and watercolour to engage with notions of identity, history, power and the control of information. She lives and works in London.
From 7 March until 1 May 2012, selected drawings, photo-text works and a film from HEXEN2.0 will be exhibited simultaneously at The Science Museum as part of its contemporary arts programme. Please visit www.sciencemuseum.org.uk for further details and opening times.
WORK is also pleased to announce the publication of the HEXEN2.0 book and tarot deck, both by Black Dog Publishing. Please visit www.blackdogonline.com for further details or to buy online. Both publications are also available at WORK through Paperwork Bookshop.
A limited edition print, HEXEN2.0: From ARPANET to DARWARS via the Internet, has also been produced to coincide with the exhibition and is available exclusively through the gallery.