Exhibition — Real Truth A World’s Fair

On July 28th 2012 the exhib­i­tion Real Truth A World’s Fair, a pro­ject by Suz­anne Tre­ister, opens at Ravens Row in Lon­don…

Since London’s Great Exhib­i­tion of 1851 world’s fairs have provided a space for nations to rep­res­ent them­selves. They are potent signs of the fantas­ies, polit­ics and tech­no­lo­gies of their times and aspir­a­tions for the future. The Real Truth A World’s Fair exposes aspects of the present and pro­poses ways into the future.

A con­tex­tu­al intro­duc­tion will be provided by Robert W. Rydell’s in-depth ana­lys­is of the polit­ics and his­tor­ies of world’s fairs, to be fol­lowed by lec­tures and per­form­ances from three vis­ion­ary speak­ers: John Zerz­an, Jim Chan­non and Richard Thieme, who act­ively devote their lives to ideas, vis­ions and pro­jects for the future of the plan­et.”
 — Suz­anne Tre­ister

Dur­ing the week­ends Raven Row’s upstairs gal­ler­ies will house three lib­rar­ies: A Military/​Intelligence Recruit­ment Lib­rary, Fifth Estate Anarch­ist Magazine 1965 – 2012 and Jon Bewley’s ‘Con­spir­acy The­ory’ Lib­rary. Arte­facts from world’s fairs, designs for a vir­tu­al world’s fair, and mem­or­ab­il­ia provided by each speak­er will also be dis­played. Screen­ings in the video lounges will include Strange Cul­ture by Lynn Her­sh­man Leeson (2007) and Das Netz by Lutz Damm­beck (2003).

Sat­urday July 28th, 5 – 7pm
Robert Rydell — Crys­tal Palaces, Crys­tal Balls and Crys­tal-Clear Illu­sions Of Pro­gress: From World’s Fairs to the World Wide Web
Robert Rydell is Pro­fess­or of His­tory and Dir­ect­or of the Montana Human­it­ies Insti­tute at Montana State Uni­ver­sity. He has writ­ten books that exam­ine the power of the world’s fairs to define the mod­ern world, espe­cially to lend legit­im­acy to America’s grow­ing imper­i­al ambi­tions after the Civil War. Rydell demon­strates ways that inter­na­tion­al exhib­i­tions reveal inter­sec­tions between the cul­tur­al polit­ics of race, class and gender and afford import­ant insights into the com­plex­it­ies of glob­al­isa­tion.

Sat­urday August 4th, 5 – 7pm
John Zerz­an — The Mur­der­ous Idol­atry of the Future: Anarcho-Prim­it­iv­ism and the Endof Tech­no­logy
John Zerz­an was act­ive in the six­ties in San Fran­cisco and Berke­ley. A lead­ing pa­­rticipant in the con­tem­por­ary anarch­ist resur­gence, Zerzan’s polit­ic­al pro­ject calls for the destruc­tion of tech­no­logy. He draws the dis­tinc­tion between tools that stay under the con­trol of the user, and tech­no­lo­gic­al sys­tems that draw the user into their con­trol. His crit­ic­al ideas have chal­lenged sym­bol­ic thought, math­em­at­ics, art and the concept of time. Zerz­an has pub­lished in the Detroit magazine Fifth Estate and his books include Ele­ments of Refus­al (1988, 1999), Against Civil­iz­a­tion (1999) and Future Prim­it­ive Revis­ited (2012).

Sat­urday August 11th, 4 – 7pm
Recit­al From Memory of the Uni­ver­sal Declar­a­tion of Human Rights by Mon­ica Ross
Jim Chan­non — Go Plan­et! A Stra­tegic Vis­ion­ary Story and Art for the Next Mil­it­ary Cen­tury!
Jim Chan­non, a former Lieu­ten­ant Col­on­el in the United States Army, is a futur­o­lo­gist and mil­it­ary the­or­ist. As a pro­fes­sion­al sol­dier, he com­manded five com­bat units, with two years in Viet­nam, and in 1978 cre­ated the First Earth Bat­talion Field Manu­al for non-leth­al war­fare. In his work as social archi­tect, philo­soph­er, and futur­ist he remains a key adviser to mil­it­ary think tanks and spe­cial­ises in ‘Nat­ur­al Secur­ity’ and ‘Glob­al Recon­struc­tion’. He has cre­ated designs for a glob­al vil­lage, a dis­trict, sev­er­al biore­gions, and the plan­et con­nec­ted with a webocracy, ‘ima­gin­ing the Army’s full poten­tial as an instru­ment for the future.’ Jim Channon’s his­tory was explored in Jon Ronson’s book, The Men Who Stare at Goats (2004).

Sat­urday August 18th, 5 – 7pm
Richard Thieme — A Wil­der­ness of Mir­rors: Con­spir­acy The­or­ies and the Neces­sary Counter-Intel­li­gence of Every­day Life
Richard Thieme speaks pro­fes­sion­ally about the chal­lenges posed by new tech­no­lo­gies and the future, and how we might rein­vent ourselves to meet these chal­lenges. Cli­ents range from GE and Microsoft to the Nation­al Secur­ity Agency, FBI, US Secret Ser­vice and US Dept of the Treas­ury. Formerly an Epis­co­pali­an min­is­ter, Thieme has also spoken for six­teen years at the Black Hat Brief­ings on intel­li­gence and cor­por­ate secur­ity, and at Def Con, an annu­al com­puter hack­ers’ con­ven­tion. Thieme’s books include: Islands in the Click­stream (2004) and Mind Games, A Col­lec­tion of Nine­teen Stor­ies of Brave New Worlds and Altern­ate Real­it­ies (2010).

Raven Row

56 Artil­lery Lane
Lon­don E1 7LS

July 28th to August 18th 2012