Capitalist Realism: Future Perfect
Thessaloniki PhotoBiennale 2018
Manolis Baboussis » Guillaume Bression » Stefan Canham » Carlos Ayesta & Guillaume Bression » Stefen Chow » Petros Efstathiadis » Greg Girard » Nick Hannes » Jacqueline Hassink » Mishka Henner » Panos Kokkinias » Johnny Miller » Richard Misrach » Trevor Paglen » Paolo Woods & Gabriele Galimberti » Mark Peterson » Paris Petridis » Anna Skladmann » Carlos Spottorno » Julian Stallabras » & others
Exhibition: – 10 Apr 2019
Thessaloniki Museum of Photography
3, Navarchou Votsi str.
Capitalist Realism is broadly inspired by the term Mark Fisher introduced in his eponymous book. Following Frederic Jameson’s infamous dictum that postmodernism has been the cultural logic of late capitalism, capitalist realism could be understood today as the cultural logic of TINA –Margaret Thatcher’s self-fufilling prophecy that “There Is No Alternative” which proved to be the most succinct slogan for the modern capitalist system one could ever imagine. Living in an endless “eternal now”, we no longer seem able to imagine a future that might be different from the present. As several scholars have put it, “It is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism”.
The exhibition focuses on the capitalist system from 1989 onwards, after the collapse of the so-called Socialist Bloc and the banking crises that followed which reinforced it rather than undermining it. In general terms, this part illustrates how capitalism has since successfully presented itself as the only realistic political-economic system even when at its most pitilessly predatory, namely the recent economic crisis in South Europe. It includes works dealing with the internal contradictions of a class-divided system: bourgeoisie and working class; poverty and wealth; growth and crisis; industrial development and ecological disaster.