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The Swarm: A peek into the hive-mind of group dynamics

Events > Exhibitions

Douglas Bagnall, Gregory Bennett, Andrew Clifford, Philip Dadson, Richard Killeen, Matt Molloy, Ani O'neill, Elizabeth Thomson and Luise Fong
at The Gus Fisher Gallery
12 Jul 2008 - 17 Aug 2008

Added by Gus Fisher The Swarm is an exhibition that explores the complexities of collective intelligence, networked manoeuvres and crowd control. It takes its title and point-of-departure from the 1978 Irwin Allen film, which depicts a mutant strain of African bees that threaten to take over America. As a successor to Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, it continues the theme of many apocalypse films before and after to undermine the sense of control adult humans maintain over their environment. These stories build tension by questioning what would happen if the ordinarily benign phenomena that continually surround and outnumber us, such as insects, rabbits, frogs, piranhas, children, computers or tomatoes, decide to organise against us.

What distinguishes The Swarm from The Birds is that the deadly bees seem to collectively have a single intelligence, strategically working together as a dispersed organism. The works in the exhibition have a similar effect, gathering individual elements together to create a group infrastructure that wields more power than the sum of its parts. More than just clones, the elements in each work interact in individual ways to form and exploit networks and communities that aid further distribution or viral proliferation.

Featuring artists: Douglas Bagnall, Gregory Bennett, Philip Dadson, Richard Killeen, Matt Molloy, Ani O’Neill and Elizabeth Thomson. Curated by Andrew Clifford.

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