Bizarre alien orgy directed by Stanley Kubrick? No... there was recently a Mariko Mori exhibit at the Pinchuk Art Centre in Kiev. The centerpiece was the above installation, Oneness. From the original catalogue:
"Oneness is a sculpture of six “alien” figures, linking hands in a circle. When the viewer participates in the work by hugging the figures and welcoming them, the aliens’ eyes light up and their hearts start beating. When all six are hugged at once the base lights up as well. Oneness is an allegory of connectedness, a representation of the disappearance of boundaries between the self and others. It is a symbol of the acceptance of otherness and a model for overcoming national and cultural borders."
It was a great exhibit and I had a good time. But I couldn't help thinking that such elaborate installations seemed to be out of place with the times. Besides being ridiculously expensive (and undemocratic in materials) it may be time for mainstream art to become openly critical again. I want Mariko Mori but I also want to see more engagement with history when I go to the museum or gallery. That being said, the following mix is an exercise in optimism: