Total surveillance, manipulation by an perfidious entertainment industry, eradication of the individual, abolishment of the private space — the great dystopias of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries present the image of societies in which humanity is lost. Aldous Huxley already drafted a system of total state control in his 1929 novel Brave New World. George Orwell’s 1984 (1949) anticipated the “glass citizen” and the strategies of a post-factual politic that employs language primarily as a means of manipulation. Current examples from the history of cinema like Matrix (1999) or Children of Men (2006) predict the downfall of humankind through the domination of artificial intelligence or the impairment of fertility in a destroyed environment.
Dystopias, “bad places,” often read like clairvoyant analyses of social developments translated to a future in which the world has been thrown out of joint. The five artistic works presented in this third act of the Alternatives for Living project unfold their dystopic scenarios from very different perspectives. Criticism of the political system, technological promises, current political affairs: from the avatar on the living room carpet and a fictional collective of artists living in exile to the preservation of food for an uncertain future, the pieces depict disturbing multifaceted images of possible life drafts.