The work in this exhibition/project is inspired by the following section from the book 1984, written by George Orwell in 1948. Deemed one of the most important books ever written and known as a handbook for difficult times the novel depicts a dystopian future in which the citizens live in misery, under constant surveillance.
Bernadette Kiely re interprets it as a vehicle for current thinking about the future of the planet in a time of climate crisis.
“No one dares trust a wife or a child or a friend any longer. But in the future there will be no wives and no friends. Children will be taken from their mothers at birth as one takes eggs from a hen. The sex instinct will be eradicated. Procreations will be an annual formality like the renewal of a ration card. We shall abolish the orgasm. Our neurologists are at work upon on it now. There will be no loyalty, except loyalty to Big Brother. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother. There will be no laughter, except the laugh of triumph over a defeated enemy. There will be no art, no literature, no science. There will be no distinction between beauty or ugliness. There will be no curiousity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always do not forget this, Winston, Always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever. “ [1984, George Orwell, June 1948].
The Quay, Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny.
Kilkenny Arts Festival 2017. August 11 – 19
Where is the Picture of the Future
Kilkenny Arts Festival 2017,