Aesthetica Issue 78

Aesthetica Issue 78

Time is relative. In order to understand it we must have an anchor point, but the present is moving so fast, how do you capture it? People constantly want to be “in the know”, and such an attitude is increasingly representative of the modern, collective state of mind. However, in this era of accelerating post-truth and digital manipulation, where fact converges with fiction and Love Island gets as much, if not more, coverage than an ice shelf half the size of Wales breaking, we must ask ourselves – what is going on?

This issue starts with the Chicago Architecture Biennial and its theme of Make New History, a title that calls into question the relationship between the past and memory. With over 100 participants, this year’s event interrogates architecture’s place in present-day society. Unseen Amsterdam also opens this September, and as part of this year’s fair there is a showcase of new talent. We select three practitioners whose images are devoid of human presence, eliciting an eerie sense of isolation. Meanwhile, Julia Körner, a collaborator with the venerable Iris van Herpen, discusses fashion and technology, and the possibilities of 3D printing, with a specific focus on how nature influences the manmade world. Similarly looking to innovation, 50 design studios are brought to light in a new publication by Prestel which dissects sustainability and the trend to move away from fast production.

In photography, we showcase the work of seven practitioners who use space, light and the body in innovative ways. From Marcus Palmqvist and Matthieu Belin to Maik Lip and Paul et Martin, the images capture an overall sense of movement. Our annual collaboration with London College of Communication also returns, bringing the best and the brightest to the fore through a range of styles and techniques. Finally, the last words go to Sylvain Biard, who reassesses the conceptual impact of place.

The issue is available from 1 August. To pick up a copy:

1. Paul et Martin, The French Lesson. Shot for Pantheone’s SS16 FRENCH SUMMER Collection. Co-directed with David Hugono-Petit. Courtesy of Studio Paul et Martin.