DXP (Digital Transformation Planet): Towards the Next Interface

The evolution of digital technology since the latter half of the 20th century has changed planet Earth and the lives and sensibilities of all of us who live on it. This year, 2023, has seen particularly rapid advancements in the spread of AI and the shift to Web 3.0, and unprecedented change in terms of how he digital technology that was once a tool is now transforming into an autonomous other with its own agency. The AI Alliance’s argument that artificial intelligences should be regulated within the scope of human ethics stems from how they threaten to intrude upon such norms and their corresponding spheres of activity. 

In this day and age, when the relationship between humans, things (machines), and other living things is being generated on a daily basis, a new kind of human capacity to survive the remainder of the 21st century is being tested.

DXP (Digital Transformation Planet): Towards the Next Interface showcases works that demonstrate the relationship between the ever-changing nature of digital technology and human beings, in addition to offering propositions that allow both sides to grow and develop. Through a diverse selection of aesthetic practices, this exhibition will show how the position and status of human beings might be relativized, and what kind of ecology can be forged by simply existing as one of the many agents and players within it. In addition, a special section within the exhibition proper based on radical pedagogy stresses the need for new pedagogical approaches in light of this context.

This exhibition, co-curated by curatorial director Yuko Hasegawa and four young curators, all of whom are around 30 years old—Yuu Takagi, Mio Harada, Yishu Hang, and Jin Motohashi—will show the relationship between basic human needs (wearing clothing, nutrition, and space-making) and digital technology, the world of XR (cross reality) and the Metaverse as representative of another, equally valid reality. The creation of videos and sculptures from brainwave data and the transformation of that data into compositions and colors is also a new kind of generative, alchemical process that collaborates with these agencies (AI and algorithms). Showcased here are a diversity of interactions, such as the transformation of our bodies and aesthetic sensibilities by wearing wigs and clothing enhanced with XR, and a new kind of consciousness gleaned through increasingly profound conversations with androids equipped with GPT and able to interact in natural language. Unlike the rigid and distant interactions typical of media technology exhibitions, this exhibition seeks to facilitate an intra-active experience akin to the sensation of being able to give someone a hug, in addition to highlighting experiments that bring the digital into the realm of empathy, seen in practices based on the theatricalization of gameplay, for example.

The works and practices of these 23 artists, fashion designers, architects, scientists, and others from 13 countries demonstrate the possibilities of a diverse and comprehensive life, based on thoughtful criticism. DXP (Digital Transformation Planet) proffers a vision of, the digital that can be touched and felt, or even eaten. In the radical pedagogy section, ten videos and data images ranging from tutorials to biosimulation videos are exhibited in the connecting hallways. Support for the exhibition, inclusive of this section, was provided by advisor Hans Ulrich Obrist and the Takashi Ikegami Lab at the University of Tokyo, which specializes in artificial life.

Exhibiting artists: AFROSCOE, Refik Anadol, ANREALAGE, Shruti Belliappa & Kiraṇ Kumār, GROUP, HATRA+Yuma Kishi, Keiken, Tomihiro Kono, MANTLE: Shu Isaka + Soshi Nakamura, Shōei Matsuda, David OReilly, Takashi Ikegami Laboratory, University of Tokyo, VUILD, Jonathan Zawada, Merve Akdogan, David Blandy, DEF CON 26, Bert Chan, Sarah Ciraci, Homei Miyashita Laboratory, Meiji University, Emi Kusano, Till Nowak, Sputniko!