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NATIONAL HERITAGE   08.08.03 - 27.09.03
MEDIALOUNGE
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This exhibition was the first UK showing of Mongrel's work National Heritage. Mongrel are a collective formed in 1995 out of a desire to combat socially excluding attitudes towards new technologies.

"The fact that people's skins are of different colour, or that people manifest their intelligence in different ways, or that people are born to different social classes needs have no more bearing on their place in the world than the difference in the colour of their toe-nails - if they have any."

The exhibition presents the provocative National Heritage, a large scale audiovisual interactive work which challenges the viewer’s attitudes towards a series of racially stereotyped faces. Accompanying National Heritage we also present Natural Selection, their search engine exploring racial politics and the data-classification systems of search engines such as Yahoo, Heritage Gold, a hack of Photoshop in which the red, blue and green colour options are replaced by Aryan, African and Asian options, and Nine9, Graham Harwood’s latest work of ‘Social Software’.

Mongrel have previously shown work at Ars Electronica, Barbican Art Gallery, ICA and the Pompidou Centre, Paris; they have also created an online project for Tate Modern, mirroring the Tate’s website while offering a critical reading of the Tate collections and ideology.

 

 

"Mongrel is a mixed bunch of people, machines and intelligences working to celebrate the methods of London street culture. We make socially engaged culture, which sometimes means making art, sometimes software, sometimes setting up workshops, or helping other mongrels to set things up.

"We do this by employing any and all technological advantage that we can lay our hands on. Some of us have dedicated ourselves to learning technological methods of engagement, which means we pride ourselves on our ability to program, engineer and build our own software, while others of us have dedicated ourselves to learning how to work with people."

"Mongrel sets up strategic alliances to expand and contract. Sometimes fifty mongrels work on a project, sometimes one."

Mongrel Core Members are Matsuko Yokokoji, Mervin Jarman, Richard Pierre-Davis and Harwood.

www.scotoma.org

www.mongrelx.org

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