Exhibition, Atrium 8, ZKM (April-August 2016).

What do you do when you are disoriented, when the compass of your phone goes haywire? You reset it.The procedure depends on the situation and device, but you always have to stay calm and carefully follow instructions if you want the compass to capture signals again.

In this exhibition, we offer you to do something similar: resetting a few of the instruments that allow you to register some of the confusing signals sent by the epoch. Except what we are trying to recalibrate is not as simple as a compass, but this most obscure principle of projection to map out the world, namely Modernity.

Modernity was a way to differentiate past and future, North and South, progress and regress, radical and conservative. However, at a time of deep ecological mutation, such a compass is running in wild circles without offering much bearing anymore. This is why it is time for a reset. Let’s pause for a while, follow a procedure and search for different sensors that could allow us to recalibrate our detectors, our instruments, to feel anew where we are and where we might wish to go.

The layout of the exhibition itself offers a set of disorienting/reorienting procedures. No guarantee, of course: this is an experiment, a thought experiment, a Gedankenausstellung.


Lisa Bergmann & Alina Schmuch · Jean-Joseph Baléchou· Hicham Berrada · Bureau d’Études · Kees Boeke · Emma Charles · Tacita Dean · Albrecht Dürer · Charles & Ray Eames · Folder (Marco Ferrari, Elisa Pasqual) & Alessandro Busi, Aaron Gillett, Pietro Leoni, Delfino Sisto Legnani, Alessandro Mason, Angelo Semeraro, Livia Shamir · Jean-Michel Frodon & Agnès Devictor · Peter Galison, Robb Moss & Students · Fabien Giraud · Sylvain Gouraud · Pierre Huyghe · Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation · Pauline Julier · Armin Linke · Adam Lowe · David Maisel · John Martin · Anne-Sophie Milon & Jan Zalasiewicz · Lorenza Mondada, Nicolle Bussien, Sara Keel, Hanna Svensson & Nynke van Schepen · Ahmet Ögüt · Véréna Paravel & Lucien Castaing-Taylor · Elke Evelin Reinhuber · Sophie Ristelhueber · Philippe Squarzoni · Simon Starling · Thomas Struth · Sarah Sze · Thomas Thwaites · The Unknown Field Division (Liam Young and Kate Davies) · Benoît Verjat & Donato Ricci · Jeff Wall

Design Research & concept development

Critical Media Lab, Institute of Experimental Design and Media Cultures, Academy of Art and Design FHNW Basel:
Jamie Allen, Claudia Mareis, Moritz Greiner-Petter, Paolo Patelli, Johannes Bruder, Flavia Caviezel, Carola Giannone, Deborah Tchoudjinoff.


The book accompanying the exhibition, Reset Modernity!, was published by MIT Press.