April 23 - June 12, 2022
Tirtodipuran Building A
Making Sense by Making Connections
Much of humanity’s perpetuance can be attributed to our nature to connect with others. Indeed, it is more advantageous to face a threat or the unknown with a group of individuals rather than to stick with oneself. However, this behavior is not limited to people. We do not only form relations with one another but also attach ourselves to objects, ideas, and concepts. These bonds form meanings and understandings that can help us make sense of the world around us, and as they develop into knowledge, we must accept that the backdraw of our tendency—the habit of forming social bubbles—can lead to knowledge illusion.
The concept of knowledge illusion, as postulated by cognitive scientists Philip Fernbach and Steven Sloman, proposes that we have a penchant for affiliating one or another dogma that is shaped and shared by a group of peers, allowing us to not only operate communally but also let that same group think for us. The eventual effect of knowledge illusion is bias, fact disparity, and prejudice. The advent of modern technology—transportation, social media, and teleconferencing software—have enabled us to connect more efficiently with people across the globe, especially in times of the ongoing pandemic, but it has also strengthened the potency of collective mindset. It is not uncommon for us to encounter intense polarity in, for example, political ideologies or confidence in the scientific method, as if the wide array spectrum of ideas have washed out to a dull contrast of black and white. As we connect with diverse and opposing individuals less and less, the illusion of knowledge exacerbates.
Art steps in to fill in the gaps created by social bubbles by humanizing us, though it cannot cure bias and prejudices nor change our behaviors. It could, however, invest people in deconstructing their own knowledge and in turn connect with others. Art takes time to seep into people’s psyche, but this slow and long process of dialogue is something that art can provide to bridge one community and the other.
On Connectivity examines select connections between men and the various subjects around them, such as the collective mindset, their habitats, history, and even the universe. The hope is that connections will be built upon observing the artworks presented; the more we connect with others that are unlike us or think differently from us, the less the gap that divides us, and the more we understand the world.