Solid Failure

Galerie Kontext 15 02 — 25 03
opening — 14 2 2017

The impossibility of achieving the goal not because of one’s own inability, but because of the ambiguity of the desired. We wish to see before we look. The present is thus constantly postponed to the future, which thereby ceases to exist. For, as someone has said or written, the only real future is the one we do not expect, the one that surprises us. Vojtěch Rada’s current projects, culminating in a video installation in this case, reflect this very paradox through completely distinct stories and visual motifs – the desire to achieve the unattainable. This tension between now and the distant is a field of imagination. Through technology, we see what we would not otherwise see, but the question is where blind faith ends and begins. Is the existence of particles invisible to the eye more real than a Nigerian astronaut trapped in space? The “Exploring Nollywood” project, which was an online collaborative effort with the Nigerian film industry, ended in failure due to the differing perceptions of those involved.

While Rada wanted to utilize the visually “low-quality” trash imagery, others craved the slickness of Disney productions. Paradoxically, this failure opened the possibility for an entirely new story, based on spam from a supposed African astronaut that Rada received through the Nollywood project’s website. The exhibition includes a printed magazine published on the occasion of the first presentation of Rada’s project in Frankfurt at the Husslehof gallery (2016), which illustrates the communication between him and the Nigerian producers. The video projected on a sphere, which therefore necessarily undergoes further (cosmic) distortion, was sent by the artist in response to the spam he received. 

The material contrast between the sphere and the rough columns spread out in the exhibition space is meant to evoke an unfulfilled longing for perfection, or at least for knowledge of an undistorted reality. All other possible readings are then a matter of the viewer’s imagination. Vojtěch Rada’s (*1991) interest in the intersection of the spheres of architecture and object creation has recently shifted towards game environments and questions of the expansion (or contraction) of reality in relation to new technologies. Rada is a student of the Academy of Fine Arts, Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague and a graduate of the Zurich ZHdK.