The art collective “assume vivid astro focus” (avaf) participates in the group show “Brainwashed”, that features 10 artists in the Haus der Kunst museum, in Munich, Germany. The exhibition intends to raise awareness about the mechanisms of manipulation and it is dedicated to the pop cultural phenomenon of the mainstream, which had it’s peak in the early 2000s. The show opened on January 31, 2020, and can be visited until June 28th. It was curated by Jana Baumann.
The participating artists expose commercial visual languages and their “contradictory promises, stereotypes and clichés”. The works selected concern economy, media and politics, that have the goal of influencing people and getting bigger profits, and some of the techniques used in the pieces presented include new editing, collage and self-staging. As explained in the show’s press release, “The exhibition explores the question as to which manipulative strategies in pluralistic societies were able to create a media consonance, a tone-setting taste in culture, including the propagation of political convictions or even hegemonic views of history”.
In avaf’s video installation in “Brainwashed”, the group parodies the supposedly emancipated pop culture of the millennium, and the binary gender concepts are undermined, such as the ones propagated in music videos: Carla Machado’s (a transgender) version of the song “Walking on Thin Ice” can be heard; young performers wear very little clothing and put on make-up, sing, dance and flirt with the camera; colour distortions and overexposures are used in the piece, and the performance is overlapped by layers of reality and simulation.
“Brainwashed”, group show featuring avaf
From January 31 to June 28th
Haus der Kunst
Prinzregentenstraße 1, 80538 Munich