Digital Dark Ages Tour \ Various Artists (2017)

What if, in the far future, we cannot read the electronic documents, images and multimedia files, that proliferate our worlds today? Digital Dark Ages was an exhibition exploring the possibilities and challenges we face when preserving our digital lives for future generations. As urgent work continues on how to archive, standardise and up-date our growing library of digital records, what should remain and what will disappear?   

Set under the earth, in a world built around industry and knowledge-excavation, a selection of internationally recognised artists were invited to think about how meaning is transferred and preserved in the long-term. Experimenting with the ways in which we keep, share and store, as well as how the tools we use to record and capture are already changing us in the present day, Digital Dark Ages proposed a series of prophetic, provocative and uncanny reflections on what is fast becoming the new normal.

Digital Dark Ages featured:

Nora Al-Badri and Jan Nikolai Nelles – Not a Single Bone
Charlotte Jarvis – Music of the Spheres
Sam Lavigne – DeepTime Decryption 
Martha McGuinn – Everything in Slices Part V
Simone Niquille – ROOT 0082
Shift Register (Jamie Allen and Martin Howse) – Earth Observatory Array Elements – Treak Cliff
Thomas Thwaites – Chromobytes

The accompanying talk From Electronic Superhighway to Digital Dark Ages was commissioned by AND Festival as part of The New Networked Normal, and presented at AND Festival 2017. 

Digital Dark Ages was supported by Jerwood Charitable Foundation. There was also additional support from University of Salford and Creative EuropeThis project has been co-funded with support from the Creative Europe programme. 

Image: Chromobytes, Thomas Thwaites. Taken by Chris Foster