Ugochukwu-Smooth Nzewi

I engage the globe through shifting lenses, reorganizing and realigning the world’s geopolitical spaces in search of “New-Realisms.” I imagine a scenario where it is possible to transfer realities that sum up how we understand and consume the world’s different “geopolities” without altering their cartographic boundaries. Using images (postcards and photos), text and scribbles, I convert a section or entire gallery into new possible worlds. For fleeting moments, I will shift geographies and their accompanying temporal and historical realities conceptually and based on images. For example, on a carefully outlined cartography of Europe, North America, Africa, Asia, etc., on the gallery wall, I will juxtapose postcards and photographs of landmarks and historical sites that approximate their “First Worldness” or Second/Third “Worldness.”
These new possible worlds are emplaced on white backgrounds covered sparingly with text and scribbles on the meanings of utopia, dystopia and globalization. Artists and the viewing public are invited to interact with the installation and record their impressions of the reconfigurations textually around the maps. This interaction is filmed while it is ongoing, and edited later. The goal of the project is to understand how the familiar becomes estranged and to imagine how these transpositions can constitute dystopia and utopia for the viewer depending on what his/her social, political and epistemological leanings may be.