The Great Globe
The point of departure for this exhibition is the Great Globe, a spectacular attraction designed by 19th century cartographer and Member of Parliament James Wyld. It comprised a hollow globe eighteen metres in diameter, installed on London’s Leicester Square, containing a staircase four stories high, which the public could climb in order to view the geography of Earth modelled in plaster on its interior surface. Opened in 1851 to coincide with the Great Exhibition, the georama attracted several million visitors over the course of a decade. Throughout the years, inside the galleries adjoining the structure, Wyld and his team installed exhibitions and dioramas evoking the lives of Arctic and African peoples, as well as presentations on distant events, such as the Crimean War or the construction of the Panama Canal. Having opened before the laying of the first transatlantic telegraph cable, the Great Globe was an iconic snapshot of the era’s planetary fantasies, the Victorian society of spectacle and the general experience of modernity.
Based on all of the above, the leitmotif of our show, titled The Great Globe, is the dramaturgy of encounter with the globe, relayed through contemporary experiences by the exhibited artworks. Questions are raised in terms of twenty-first century situations, albeit often with a historical perspective: What are the implications of accommodating the ‘global’ in our own environment? What kinds of simultaneities, encounters and networks may be generated between distant points and how can the particular topography of these be mapped? How can we reinterpret diverse historical, social and economic phenomena through local experiences? How should we relate to the ever-changing world? In general: what kind of spectacle does the Earth offer today? The intentionally heterogeneous selection ranges from very personal, performative actions through research-based, distanced, conceptual works, exploring and bringing closer the complex phenomena of post-colonialism, climate change, world trade, digital capitalism and cyberspace with a focus on different movements, flows and interactions.
Participating artists: Michael Blum, Lőrinc Borsos, Louise Drulhe, Marcell Esterházy, Vadim Fishkin, Kendell Geers, Malgorzata Goliszewska, Ferenc Gróf, Louis Henderson, Klara Hobza, Tibor Horváth, Felix Kiessling, Runo Lagomarsino, Paulo Moreira, Société Réaliste, Pavel Sterec & Vilém Duha
Curators: Flóra Gadó and András Heszky
Graphic design: Bálint Jákob
The exhibition is supported by: Czech Centrum, Institut Français de Budapest, Korean Cultural Center, National Cultural Fund, City Council of Budafok-Tétény 22nd District of Budapest, Absolut
The exhibition is on view between 18 May and 30 June.
Opening hours: Monday - Friday 12 - 6 pm