Hannah Toticki Anbert

One of the big challenges technology presents to intimacy and love is the question of paying attention. With the endless flow of information and constant communication, we often fail to be present in the here and now. Short attention span and attention deficit are both afflictions of the digital age. But being present is a precondition for love. Hannah Toticki Anbert’s work focuses on the relationship between social relations, political economy and technological developments. The works presented here all point to the relationship between technology and body. Their use is ambiguous – designed to help us focus but at the same time being restraining, maybe even slightly claustrophobic. This ambiguity is a metaphor for the double nature of the endless possibilities of modern digital technology: on the one hand being useful and facilitating communication, while on the other binding and alienating. It is a technology that sets us free but at the same time challenges genuine and intimate human contact. Touch Screen Protection Rings (2019) functions as a physical obstacle that protects us from our desire for constant updates. Smart Phone Protection Glasses (2019), similarly, blocks out the part of our visual field where our smartphone would usually be held in our hand. In Focus Ware (2020), two garments are designed in such a way that the gaze, direction and bodily gesture are focused towards one another. In Digital Embrace (2020) warm flexible skin meets cold and hard technology, and the limits between body and technology become transgressed. How is experience of love, care and tenderness, influenced by technology, now that it has become an extension of the physical body? Framing Presence  (2020) is a furniture-sculpture designed for two bodies sitting facing each other, which infers to the ubiquitous screens that shape our perception: a reality constantly cropped into a square selection. “Things” do not necessarily happen in front of us, but elsewhere in time and space.

Hannah Toticki Anbert