Exposition ‘End of the world and self centred world’
Our world is one of nuclear threats, geopolitical tensions, destruction of the natural environment, and global warming—today, the “end of the world” is no longer just a religious prophecy or scientific prediction. It is already here, firmly in the category of phenomena that can be physically sensed and experienced. This exhibition, End of the World and Self-centered World, faces up to and confronts the catastrophic subjects that appear at the point of intersection between the political, the social, and the human. It fundamentally questions concepts of modern times, not in order that we may survive until the end of the world, but in order that we may live with the end of the world.
The end of the world can also be considered the demise of anthropocentrism. This comes from the idea that every living creature lives in its own umwelt, a species-specific perceptual world or self-centered world, with the individual animal as the subject in the world that it experiences. According to Jakob von Uexküll,* universal time and space (which von Uexküll called umgebung—the objective environment, or the view from outside a self-centered world) are also perceived by animal subjects as their own time and space. Animal behavior is the result of the different perceptions and effects experienced by each animal, and has specific significance for each different creature. The significant interrelationships between animal subjects and the objects that they perceive were described as a plan for life by von Uexküll, who advocated research in greater depth into such plans.
End of the World and Self-centered World is an exhibition that poses the difficult question of whether we can free ourselves from anthropocentrism and reach an awareness of the fact that we all live in different self-centered worlds.
* Jakob von Uexküll (1864–1944) was a German biologist known for his proposal of the term umwelt (Ger. Umwelt, literally meaning surrounding world or environment, sometimes translated as self-centered world) in the field of biology. He used umwelt to refer to the world as independently constructed by or perceived by biological subjects. Rather than an objective view of the environment, this refers to the environment as perceived by the subject and able to be acted on by the subject, hence self-centered world. For the subject, the umwelt is its reality, the stage upon which it lives.
Commissariat d’exposition : Takayo Iida
Avec Yayoi Kusama, Anish Kapoor, Shusaku Arakawa, Aki Inamata, Akira Kamo, Maki Ohkojima, Lia Giraud
GYRE Gallery, Tokyo
13.05.22 — 03.07.22
5-10-1 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001