The group exhibition, Earthlings, presents a selection of works from artists who recently graduated from the photography departments of Dutch art academies. These artists were part of Blurring The Lines an international talent program founded in 2016 by Klaus Fruchtnis (Paris College of Art, France) and Steve Bisson (Urbanautica Institute, Italy), later joined by FOTODOK and the European Cultural Centre.
The emerging artists of the Earthlings seem to be visionaries. Although they chose their themes before the corona outbreak, their work reflects the societal issues that came into starker contrast during the pandemic. It is now more evident than ever: how we have chosen to live together within the limited space of this planet has resulted in a precarious balancing act. We share the Earth with one another, with animals, and the nature that surrounds us. The sun, the mountains, plants, trees, and rocks may all combine as an idea of “nature” to some people, but for others their meanings differ greatly. The places we were born help shape our identity; a home for one is an unfamiliar place for another. How do we share our, sometimes painful, history on Earth with each other? What is the impact of our limitless consumption on the climate? And how malleable are our lives?
These are some of the existential questions raised by the young artists in this exhibition. The works in Earthlings are concerned with our planet, are asking questions about our place in the ecosystem, and searching for solutions. They confront us with the urgencies of our world, and employ many forms of imagination and thinking to reflect on our current times. They offer hope and propose alternatives for the future.