Future U

Future U explores what it means to be human during a time of rapid technological acceleration. The exhibition presents creative responses to developments in artificial intelligence, robotics and biotechnology. While innovation in these areas offers amazing possibilities, it also poses questions and presents challenges to our beliefs and values.  

As humans we must navigate the complexity of technological change in the twenty-first century. The aspects that make us human, such as creativity, love and intelligence, are increasingly under threat as machines reveal themselves to be capable of surpassing human capacity. On one hand, we applaud technology for its ability to prolong our lives, and yet we also mistrust it and fear its capacity to take away our usefulness and unique abilities as humans. 

The dreams, speculations and possible nightmares offered by artists, designers and researchers provide a glimpse of a contradictory, messy future that is both unlimited and unruly. But it is also a future which embraces the possibilities of a body and a world that extends beyond our current limitations.  

Curated by Jonathan Duckworth and Evelyn Tsitas

Artists, designers and researchers include  Bettina von Arnim, Holly Block, Karen Casey, Duckworth Hullick DuoPeter Ellis, Jake Elwes, Alexi Freeman, Libby Heaney, Leah Heiss and Emma Luke, Pia InterlandiAmy Karle, Mario Klingemann,  Zhuying Li, Christian Mio Loclair, Maina-Miriam Munsky, Patricia Piccinini, Stelarc, Uncanny Valley, and Deborah Wargon.

Exhibition Catalogue – View the Future U exhibition catalogue

Exhibition PodcastListen to a podcast about the Future U exhibition

Stelarc PerformanceWatch Stelarc’s performance of StickMan / miniStickMan

Future U runs until 26 February 2022.

Future U in the Media

Art Almanac | Future U, by Dr Joseph Brennan

Art Guide Australia | Karen Casey maps the intersection of personal history, art and science in Future U by Barnaby Smith

Artshub | ICYMI: the week’s arts news by Gina Fairley

Beat Magazine | 5 stunning new Melbourne art exhibitions to see in February


Image above by Patricia Piccinini, Teenage Metamorphosis, 2017, silicone, fibreglass, human hair, found objects. Image courtesy of the artist, Scott Lawrie Gallery (Auckland); Tolarno Galleries (Melbourne); Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery (Sydney); Hosfelt Gallery (San Francisco). 

This project has been supported by the Goethe-Institut Australia as part of their ongoing project Kulturtechniken 4.0 – Creating in the Age of AI which features artists and experts working across the field of artificial intelligence (AI).