Atelier 35 presents SENSE NAVIGATION SYSTEM, a curatorial experiment conceived by Carmen Casiuc as a deep map of human-technology relations and the various ways in which they affect and mediate our modes of perception of reality. It unravels the relationship between materiality, technology and aesthetics in the construction of subjectivity.

Maps are valuable cultural artifacts of human belief and value systems – the location of direct experience, sensuous swirls of emotions, perceptions and myths, on which the representation of reality depends for its meaning. Present day satellites, atomic clocks, automated calculating machines sing us songs of abstract courtship dances that transgress the human scale and perception of time-space. We are ‘positioned’ within a transparent, rationalized, expansionist, spectacular and clamorous space-production, where the globe is used as its own map: convention becomes construction.

To this, an entirely different kind of production is confronted, a make-believe consumption, where vast and extensive media networks and relentless technosciences modulate a constellation of power, production and experience. Micro-targeted appeal rather than policing, advertising rather than indoctrinating, need creation rather than normative regulation immerse us in a culture of ubiquitous electronic screens and networked pleasures. We are ‘positioned’ within a collective virtual lifeform, in which ideas circulate faster than ever; emotions and experiences expand and generate new group formations acording to a hyper-real reconstruction of reality. Construction becomes simulation.

Taking this setting as the point of departure, the historical merchant district of Bucharest provides us with one of the country’s oldest arena of multicultural transactions and historical cross-societal bonds. Disneyland and politicized representations of Romania have hybridized, translating the various scenarios of social transformation into cultural and experiential commodities. They are underpinning the many desires that are afloat where power multiplies, unfolds, fluctuates or diminishes. These are the cardinal points from which feelings imprinted on our bodies and our subjectivities orient ourselves or drive us astray into latent and ambiguous territories.

SENSE NAVIGATION SYSTEM proposes forms of negotiation between the local site of agency and globally defined possibilities, necessary in order to navigate through the present. Each exhibition will take the format of a commercial business existing in the gallery’s neighborhood, identifying different layers of simulation: technological, social, imaginative and conventional. The invited artists employ the material and technological forces informing our different modes of perception and invite us to confront deeper and translucently dense present considerations of our socio-economical and cultural life.

Mapping the new sensibility of our techno-emotional ecosystem, SENSE NAVIGATION SYSTEM is an exercice of speculative power geometry, where we invite one to seeing oneself sensing the evasive aspects of everyday life.

Carmen Casiuc (b. 1994) is an art critic, essayist and independent researcher with interests in contemporary culture, new media theory and cultural studies. She has collaborated in the past with V&A Museum (London), Nicodim Gallery (Bucharest) and Lehmann Maupin (New York).