In 1922, under the slogan ‘immortalism and interplanetarism’ the Moscow bio-cosmists demanded nothing less than the immediate elimination of the temporal and spatial limits of human life. They follow in the footsteps of Russian philosopher Nikolai Fyodorov (1829–1903). He speculated about the abolition of mortality and the resurrection of all humans by the technology of art under the auspices of a state becoming a museum. Fyodorovs ideas influenced theorists, scientists and activists in pre- and early soviet times. The cosmists share the belief in a rational evolution of mankind, finding its completion in the overcoming of death and the conquest of space.
Today developments in artificial intelligence and biotechnology fuel transhumanist utopias of eliminating the temporal limits of human life. It comes as no surprise that Calico – the Califoria Life Company a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc. – set itself the business objective to prolong human life. Yet, whereas Russian cosmists regarded the achievement of human immortality as a collective, ‘common task’ many current transhumanist aspirations are aimed at self-optimisation.
The exhibition Immortalismus (Immortalism) brings together works by contemporary artists that open up different perspectives on visions, technologies and ideologies to overcome death. It takes the utopian ideas of Nikolai Fyodorov and the Russian avant-garde movement of the cosmists as a historical starting point.
Artists: Ivana Bašić, Harm van den Dorpel, Cécile B. Evans, Pakui Hardware, Lina Hermsdorf, Kitty Kraus, Oliver Laric, Dominik Sittig, Anton Vidokle, Tchelet Weisstub
Fri, 15 September, 7 pm
Introduction: Heinrich Dietz, director
Tue – Sun, 12 am – 6 pm
Wed, 12 am – 8 pm, Mon closed
Day of German Unity (open 03.10.)
Entrance: 2 € /1,50 € Thursdays free, Members free