Jefferson Hack, best known as the founder of Dazed, has curated an exhibition of both established and emerging artists from across the world, which opens in London on October 2. Transformer: The Rebirth of Wonder will bring together a selection of multi-disciplinary creators using their practices to imagine future worlds. It is the latest in a series of group shows by The Store X The Vinyl Factory, which has previously presented exhibitions like New Museum’s Strange Days: Memories of the Future (2018), Lisson Gallery’s Everything at Once (2017), and Hayward Gallery’s off-site show Infinite Mix (2016).
Transformer explores issues of identity, representation, and self-image while considering how building alliances and connections can enact positive change in society. The title of the exhibition takes inspiration from Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s rousing poem “I Am Waiting” – a searing, emotional social commentary on the problems facing American society and the need for a change of consciousness, or the “rebirth of wonder”.
“I am waiting for my case / to come up / and I am waiting / for a rebirth of wonder / and I am waiting for someone / to really discover America,” Ferlinghetti wrote 100 years ago, an impassioned call for social change that rings true in today’s fractured political landscape.
“The artists in Transformer look deeply into the present and see the future,” says Hack. “Each artist is a powerful mediator of their community and culture, using storytelling, poetics, and ritual to author new narratives and expand our field of vision. They are world-makers, inviting us to access altered states of consciousness as we step beyond reality into a series of highly authored, staged environments.”
Coinciding with Frieze London, Transformer will feature newly commissioned and debut works by Doug Aitken, Korakrit Arunanondchai, Sophia Al-Maria & Victoria Sin, Donna Huanca, Juliana Huxtable, Evan Ifekoya, Dozie Kanu, Quentin Lacombe, Lawrence Lek, Jenn Nkiru, Chen Wei, Harley Weir & George Rouy.
The exhibition will be accompanied by Alchemical Realms, a programme of talks, performances, and workshops featuring the likes of Chaos Magic, Leah Clements and Sophie Hoyle. Transformer is set to provoke important questions of identity and image through its impressive host of works by emerging new artists.
You can catch Transformer: A Rebirth of Wonder from October 2 – December 8 at The Store X Vinyl Factory, 180 The Strand