All our secrets

Center for Contemporary Arts, Celje

curated by Katrin Mundt

Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Apparatus 22, Simon Asencio, Bureau of Inverse Technology, Lenka Đorojević and Matej Stupica, Mario García Torres, Kallabris, Staš Kleindienst, Martin Kohout, Susanne Kriemann, Felipe Mujica, Adrian Paci, Stefan Panhans

Why is it that secrets, and in particular the public performance of secrets, are playing such an important role today for individuals and societies alike? On the one hand, we seem to be driven by a growing desire to exhibit our lives on- and offline, sharing everything from shopping secrets to intimate glimpses of our private selves. On the other hand, our anxieties increase as we become aware of the sheer mass of personal data that is secretly harvested, stored and used on a large scale by states and corporations for purposes we do not know (and often consciously ignore), an insight fuelled by the major and minor information leaks of recent years, making sensitive data widely accessible and throwing global power relations out of balance. This paradoxical situation can also be described in more economic terms: as secrets become more and more difficult to keep, they turn into a scarce commodity whose value we systematically deflate by advertising everything we want people to desire and consume in one way or another, from remote holiday resorts to our own life stories, as “secret/s”.