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Lot 54

Tamiko Thiel

* 1957 in Oakland, California, USA
lives and works in Munich


3-D ceramic print, custom augmented reality app
20 × 24 × 24 cm
Unique piece
Certificate with signature

Gallery price: € 9.500,- incl. VAT.

Consigned by Tamiko Thiel

Courtesy Tamiko Thiel
Photo: Haydar Koyupinar, Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Munich

Tamiko Thiel is a pioneer of augmented and virtual reality. As early as the 1980s she developed programs at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was the chief product designer of the CM-2 supercomputer, which entered the collection of MoMA. The American media artist addresses the play between positioning and surrounding space; she asks questions concerning cultural identity and deals with environmental issues. The two-part work Nothing of him that doth fade (after Ariel’s song from Shakespeare’s The Tempest) consists of a fragile white ceramic sculpture whose forms first become recognizable on closer inspection: plastic bottles, straws, and rubber ducks. When visitors direct an iPad with the corresponding augmented reality app toward the sculpture, similar but colorful “plastic waste corals” appear on its screen. If one looks around, it becomes apparent that the corals have taken over the space. With time, the colorful world fades and everything becomes white—as white as the 3-D ceramic print that constitutes the point of departure. With her work, Thiel places herself in the art-historical tradition of the still life and has it arrive in the digital age. The work is a follow-up project of the AR installation Unexpected Growth commissioned by the Whitney Museum, New York, and incorporated into its collection. It was recommended for the Lumen Prize for art and technology and will premiere in Europe at the Museum Sinclair-Haus, Bad Homburg. Thiel has already exhibited at MoMA, New York; at the ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, and at the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, and is currently presenting an AR installation at Karin Wimmer’s Digital Art Space in Munich.