Charles Sandison

God doesn’t play dice with the universe, UK, 2004

Computer program and data projection, Variable

Courtesy of Arndt & Partner, Berlin/Zuric

Charles Sandison constructs and deconstructs the sad pictures that accompany humankind, doing so by means of letters and figures. Letters are generally characterized as a basic, unbiased component, but Sandison disputes both traits, setting language itself, perhaps too – conceptual art – as an active participant in the crimes that one society commits against another.

The article by Homi K. Bhabha (appearing in the exhibition catalogue) refers to the various ways whereby, by means of an alienated syntax and ghostly voices, the literary language can express the violence characteristic of these times. His essay poses the question as to how art can highlight elements of social critique, and whether it can resort to means similar to those of literature.

Ana Martinez Collado describes Sandison’s work as an attempt “to tell stories in a world defined by ‘its post-communicative state’, as computerized art marks the change that has taken place in all artistic practices and forms.” Collado quotes Peter Weibel who finds that “The computer can, apparently, imitate not just all the forms and laws of the universe, not only the laws of nature; it can also duplicate the laws of form and the forms and laws of the world of art. Video and computer installations are liable to become literary, architectural or sculptural creations.” She notes that Sandison “employs texts generated by the computer, relying upon the narrative tradition in a contemporary context, in which on the one hand, the most appropriate way to speak thereby about truth is by means of the story, and on the other, the digital medium is transformed into the most expressive form.”