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Mercè Rodoreda, Sade and the Kosmopolis festival on the CCCB program for 2023

Mercè Rodoreda, Sade and the Kosmopolis festival on the CCCB program for 2023
bonart barcelona - 15/12/22

The CCCB will reread the legacy of the Marquis de Sade in Sade in the 2022 programme. Freedom or evil. The exhibition, opening in May, will explore the echoes of a controversial historical cultural icon and address diverse ways of looking at his legacy. Through the reception of Sade's works by artists and intellectuals, the proposal will analyze the impact of his controversial writings. An exhibition on artificial intelligence will take over the programming at the center from October, in a journey that will cover the first steps of incipient artificial intelligence to the latest advances in scientific experimentation.

The CCCB weaves the programming of the coming year with four main axes, that of evil, freedom, Mercè Rodoreda and water and seeks to consolidate the model started four years ago to "update the enlightened legacy and the humanistic outlook " from which the center was founded. In this sense, it seeks to incorporate new scientific, gender and technological perspectives.

"We want the CCCB to be an open source workshop with the vocation of becoming a test center to promote critical thinking and experimentation," explained the facility's director, Judit Carrera. In his opinion, the pillar on which the Center for Contemporary Culture is based is "trust in culture" in the midst of a world "marked by the destruction of war, of the planet...". "Culture as a necessary space to create worlds", he adds. In 2023, the center will have a budget of 13,656,000 euros, 15.5% more than the previous year.

Sade, a philosopher or a novelist?

Sade Freedom or evil will replace the current Graphic Constellation exhibition at the CCCB and can be visited at the facility between May 10 and October 15. It will offer a journey that goes from the celebration of the author by some fundamental figures of the avant-garde (Guillaume Apollinaire, Georges Bataille, Salvador Dalí, Toyen and Man Ray, among others) and the critical vision of Pier Paolo Pasolini, to reflections by contemporary artists who talk about freedom of expression, the transmutation of gender roles, the institutionalization of terror and the role of the pornographic imagination in consumer society. 'Sade' explores the aesthetic, philosophical and political implications of the legacy of the libertarian writer Donatien Alphonse François Sade (1740-1814) in contemporary culture and explores the dilemma of whether to read him as a philosopher or as a novelist who build fantasies

The exhibition features documentation of historical performances by Jean Benoît and Jean-Jacques Lebel, photographic projects such as those of Marcelo Brodsky, Robert Mapplethorpe, Pierre Molinier and Susan Meiselas, as well as literature, film, comics and video interviews with philosophers and researchers. Installations by artists such as Laia Abril (On Rape, 2020), Paul Chan (Sade for Sade's Sake, 2009), Shu Lea Cheang (´, 2019), Teresa Margolles (PM 2010, 2012), Joan Morey (Gritos & Susurros, 2009) and Kara Walker (8 Possible Beginnings or: The Creation of African-America, 2005) coexist in the exhibition with new productions by Joan Fontcuberta, Domestic Data Streamers and the staging, filmed, of a fragment from the play Le retour de Sade, by Bernard Noël (directed by Guillem Sánchez Garcia and performed by Clàudia Abellán and Joel Cojal).

According to the head of exhibitions, Jordi Costa, Sade is a "complex and ambivalent" figure, but he is one of those who best problematizes the ideological implications of the illustrated legacy. "He used enlightened reason as a tool to demonstrate the extent to which rationality could justify what is intolerable and taboo," reflected Costa during the press conference presenting the program.

The evolution of computing

The 'Artificial Intelligence' exhibition will take over at the center from 17 October until 17 March, in a show curated and organized by the Barbican Center and co-produced by Forum Groningen of the Netherlands. The version has been adapted by the CCCB and the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC).

The proposal shows the evolution of computing from the first computing machines to the data explosion of machine learning and "deep learning". Likewise, the exhibition analyzes how artificial intelligence shapes life in public and private space and opens a door to research and transversality of applications, fusing scientific and artistic disciplines. In a way, according to Costa, the two great proposals - that of Sade and that of artificial intelligence - agree in addressing "the limits of freedom".

The initiative will present new projects by international artists, scientists and researchers such as Joy Buolamwini, Es Devlin, Mario Klingemann, Kode 9, Massive Attack, Lauren McCarthy, Yoichi Ochiai, Neri Oxman, Anna Ridler, Chris Salter, Sam Twidale and Marija Avramovic, as well as locals Eduard Escoffet, Marina Herlop and Regina Giménez.

Research programs, film festivals and debates

In 2023, the CCCB will maintain the research programs, the nine film festivals and debates around speciation as new ways of generating content. Among these, the creation of a fantastic forest based on the work Viatges i flors by Mercè Rodoreda stands out, from which Cabosanroque raises a reflection on the war and its consequences from the eyes of women and children and the relationship with trauma and memory. It also features the testimonies of women and children who lived through the Second World War, collected by Nobel laureate Svetlana Aleksievich. With this project, Cabosanroque closes its trilogy of immersive installations dedicated to the free interpretation of the work of Catalan writers to address universal themes.

The CCCB also continues to work to link residents, organizations and schools in the Raval neighborhood of Barcelona with the center and will incorporate the 'School in residence' project for the third consecutive year.

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