by George Bolster
As a species, we are living through successive revolutions, initially through the internet, and now the rise of AI. Artificial intelligence is expected to transform everything in our lives, beginning with jobs, and imminently cultural production. The technology is able to create visual culture with text prompts. In opposition to this idea, the artist gives full rein to a singular human’s purely speculative fictitious art. A celebration of what seems to be the final age for this form of inquiry for artists—even those who work with technologies and science—as somewhat free and autonomous authors.
Unlike all of Bolster’s body of work in the last eight years, for A Reality of Science-Fiction the artist hasn’t actively engaged with scientists, and consequently, it is the most visually poetic. It is quotational of research Bolster is conducting on a range of issues affecting our existence: climate change as our largest challenge, systems for making us a sustainable species, and our culpability in animal, plant and insect extinctions. Elements reference nature and the possibility of relocation to the many earth like planets found in recent years by NASA missions. The works are the beginning of a series the artist refers to as Intergalactic Romanticism, and each take cues from Casper David Friedrich, and the philosophic and naturalist writings of German Romanticism. His works detach from a present, and imagine several future possibilities, aimed at one outcome, wonder.
Multidisciplinary artist George Bolster grew up in Cob, Co. Cork, and works between West-Cork and NYC. He has exhibited in numerous museums and galleries including: Ulterior Gallery, NYC, USA; the RHA, Dublin, Ireland; MMCA, Seoul, Korea; New Museum Los Gatos, California, USA; Solstice Arts Centre, Navan, Meath, Ireland; Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France; Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates; and MASS MoCA, Massachusetts, USA. The artist's monograph When Will We Recognise Us has just been published by Hirmer Verlag featuring contributions from Seán Kissane, Denise Markonish, Leanne Sacramone, Ian Alden Russell, Sarah Kelleher and Clair Walsh. The artist is the recipient of numerous prestigious residencies including: Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France (2019); Elizabeth Foundation for The Arts, New York, USA (2017); SETI Institute, Mountain View, California (2016-17); the Robert Rauschenberg Residency, Captiva, Florida, USA (2013); and The Firestation Residency, Dublin, Ireland (2012). Bolster has been awarded numerous awards from the Arts Council of Ireland and Culture Ireland.