The Mixed Reality Workshop is pleased to present Cognoscenti, an online/offline mixed-media exhibition of works by Fred Clarke.

The exhibition titled Cognoscenti is a spectral range of questions, a gauntlet of the paradox that explores the concept of knowledge, its origins and structural constitution. Clarke proposes that the possibility of investigation and symbolic descriptors and definitions of knowledge propagation are subject to revisal, mutation and ultimate entropy. Mildly referencing the book of Genesis, in its symbolism and archetypal portrayal of the inception point of knowledge. What exactly is knowledge? Is a story knowledge? Is a dream knowledge? Or is knowledge bound to legitimized forms of academia? Or cultural practices? In each instance, strong arguments for and against the legitimacy of knowledge exists, leaving it in many ways as an ambiguous key to our conscious experience.  The desire to overcome, liberate and dream new forms is both vital, and radically challenging, as it carries the responsibility of reinvention and innovation, of language, culture and knowledge - what are we learning, how, and why? History is largely written by the victors, with warped truths that cement themselves in our human story, but continually reveal their flaws. The same can be said for some elements of maths and science,  practices that present as the cornerstones of knowledge, and yet also continually update and shift in their driving theories of life and nature.

The title Cognoscenti refers to experts in certain areas of knowledge - the ones who know. In a time where information is flowing faster than we have time to assimilate it, knowledge presents as an ever-shifting and deepening well that humanity continues to expand.  As humanity seeks to discover truth and solve our seemingly unsolvable state of paradoxical behaviour, we are undoubtedly creatures of Earth. Our relationship with the planet is vital for our survival, and yet humanity continues to wander into virtual worlds and outer space, often at the expense of a natural biosphere that not only gives us life but holds some of the most staggeringly advanced systems of intelligence that exist. Through all our human sophistry and narcissism, it is easy to overlook, and more scarily - forget,  the sacred and essential connection to Earth and its creatures.

The exhibition features a series of new large-scale paintings, drawings and an accompanying sound and video installation Angel. The installation addresses the abstract journey of life, from natural cells, wild and unindoctrinated with learned information and beliefs, and the journey of losing and rediscovering a connection with that source, which is perhaps the closest we may get to the possible state of an angelic afterlife. 

About The Artist
Frederick Clarke (born 1986 in South Africa) is an multidisciplinary artist and music producer currently living and working in Johannesburg. After schooling in Pretoria he completed BA Fine Arts and English Literature degrees at the University of Witwatersrand (WITS). His work explores multiple themes, mediums and styles - predominantly ink on paper drawing, painting, spray paint murals and printmaking. Inspiration is drawn from nature, mathematics, mark-making and intuitive process. His music is in ways a sonic counterpart to the visuals, exploring texture, electronic sound-scaping and polyrhythms. Clarke Also works in video, combining these various disciplines.