While I Sleep

The current exhibition ‘While I Sleep‘ of Shilpa Gupta, a young indian artist known for her multi-layered works, seems to draw from an interesting field and ambitious sources.
Shilpta Gupta generally is know for her open minded usage of media, which attempts to put the content into a relevant relation. Gupta not only targets traditional net art audiences with works like blessed-bandwidth.net (texts about this work also here and here), Sentiment-Express.com (2001) and Diamonds and You.com (2000), but rather is interested to attract a larger audience.
For her latest project regarding our perception and conciousness about it she got interested into the research work of Mahzarin Banaji – Psychologist and Professor at Harvard University. To get an idea about the research side of the work it might be interesting to look up the following link of the implicit project: Exploring the Unconcious (start the demo page).

“While I Sleep is an about the multi-layered alterations that take place in human perception when there is a drop in consciousness of ones self, or our collective vision. As Prof Banaji says, ‘There is a fundamental fracture between what is in our heads and what we know about it’.
Having always been concerned with ‘what we see’ and ‘how we see’ am also interested in misunderstandings and structures via which information gets transacted – especially in a highly mediated landscape as the world today, especially in an atmosphere where at one hand we seek to collapse distances rapidly, where as the other, there has been a simultaneous rise of suspicion and heightened security.

A large part of the human action operates via the sub conscious, some physiologists claim up to 90%! And so in a seemingly largely seemingly democratic world where nation states have set progressive constitutions in place, pledging equality to all irrespective of gender, race and religion, people continue to harbor values of difference governed by deep rooted prejudices which dangerously be in fact be quite invisible even to ourselves (Banaji)

The exhibition explores these gaps in consciousness be it in the individual or the nation state where desire blinds itself metamorphosing into desperate greed, curtailing the natural movement of people socially, politically and economically.”

Bridging the Gap: The work of Shilpa Gupta

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