13 May – 21 June 2020

Tristan Chant

Prototype for a future

Futuring is the field of using a systematic process for thinking about and picturing possible outcomes for the future. These scenarios can help individuals, communities, corporations, and governments to develop a capacity for dealing with the unknown, unpredictable, or the unlikely but possible. The process usually relies on data and forecast reports to shape perceptions about our future.

Science fiction is, in the broadest sense, one of our most accessible forms of futuring. It has the capacity to bridge the gap between data and imagination. In the absence of functional time travel science fiction employs literary and visual languages to depict plausible futures, envisioning where contemporary social trends, breakthroughs in science and technology, and world changing events might lead us. 

Inspired by classic science fiction and using historical images as a form of data the works in ‘Prototype for a future’ form a loose fictional narrative of human experiences which exist somewhere between a global catastrophe and the resulting dystopian future. Incorporating both fictional and non-fictional imagery into collage the works exist as pictorial artefacts from the future. By employing this technique the works ground themselves in a familiarity of present while playing on our anxiety of the unknown. They play with themes of isolation, surveillance, artificial intelligence, and anthropogenic impacts to challenge the audience’s notion of what the future might look like.

Tristan Chant is an artist, curator and cultural worker based in Sydney. His practice explores the human condition through popular culture, media and advertising. Working primarily in collage, Tristan uses carefully selected images to create fictional futures that are simultaneously familiar yet disorientating. Tristan holds a Bachelor of Fine Art from the National Art School and a Masters of Arts Administration from UNSW Art & Design. From 2012 – 2015 he curated the Conductors Project, an experimental project space which supported the practices of emerging artists.

Installation images by Docqment