How to Build a Universe That Doesn't Fall Apart Two Days Later

November 28, 2006 to March 31, 2007

Unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudo-realities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of the mind.

—Philip K. Dick, 1978

This exhibition revolves around contrasting visions of the future put forward in California in the mid-1970s. It takes its title from an essay by science fiction author Philip K. Dick, in which he compares the speculative world building of artists and writers to the scenarios imagined and constructed by governments, corporations, and the mass media.

In 1974, artist Bonnie Sherk founded the Crossroads Community (The Farm), an experiment in community agriculture and education, which was also a "life-scale environmental and social artwork" underneath the Army Street freeway interchange in San Francisco. Around the same time, NASA researchers, led by Gerard K. O'Neill, were drawing up plans for the U.S. colonization of space. Their proposals were illustrated in 1976 in a series of paintings by artist Rick Guidice.

Works by contemporary artists shown alongside Sherk's and Guidice's projects present alternate scenarios, explore the ways in which our physical reality is defined, and critique the ideological narratives that attend its construction.

Artists exhibiting include Can Altay, Nate Boyce, Andreas Dalen, Rick Guidice, Jakob Kolding, Shaun O'Dell, Toby Paterson, Eileen Quinlan, Eva Rothschild, Katya Sander, William Scott, Solmaz Shahbazi, Bonnie Sherk, and Gitte Villesen.

Curated by Will Bradley.