“We need to make kin symchthonically, sympoetically. Who and whatever we are, we need to make-with—become-with, compose-with—the earth-bound.”
- Consider what “making with” might mean to you.
- Walk through the space.
- Take a CD with you (keeping in mind the precedents you are “making with” as you draw from a decreasing pile).
- When you arrive back home later, note down how your first answer may have changed.
As a circuit board carefully rests inside a conch shell and ivy feeds into a fluorescent bulb, in reading Connor McNicholas’s work a viewer is called upon to consider a new materiality, and what his structures might look like at the end of an exhibition; in ten years; in one hundred. His use of found materials such as family photographs pay respect to their precedents in begging questions of history and former lives, whereas his use of material leans toward futurity: rejecting current binaries to create speculative environments from what is already around us.
Where Remote Futures Meet Remote Pasts creates a horizontally-oriented world in which the exchanges we see between materials and humans in the mundane of the everyday are somehow both abstracted, and made exceptional. Through looping materialities, McNicholas enters into conversation with ecological and philosophical movements that challenge the life of the object and duration of the ephemeral in the ever-changing temporality of our world: now more than ever as we are not only considering our distance to the past and the future, but also to each other in the present.
Text by Emma Leigh Macdonald. Quotation: Donna Haraway, Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene (Durham: Duke University Press, 2016).