Art,  London

Hooked exhibition review, Science Gallery

How would you define addiction? Does it always have to involve self harm?

These are the questions the new Science Gallery’s first exhibition, Hooked, asks.

Visitors make their way through several small spaces and rooms, introduced to a new addiction. While the art was hit and miss, the topics of each addiction were always interesting and thought provoking.

Like the constant need to find a power source for your phone, to keep that extra piece of you alive. The mobile has become an extension of us. It made me think of having a Tamagotchi as a kid. Having a mobile is a game of keeping it alive.

But the art accompanying this idea was simply ten screens showing battery indicators powering up and down. A game of finding a power source would have been much more effective for example.

A highlight of the exhibition was the reimagining of famous movie scenes, using personal stories as the dialogue.

A recreation of Bronson playing two sides was particularly powerful, showing the two personalities, almost Jekyll and Hyde like.

Perhaps the most thought provoking highlight was having young rehab clinic patients use art to describe their drug addiction, through drawings and words.

Words used to describe the soothing feeling drugs offer, like a warm hug or a blanket, suggest why addicts continue to use.

But other words used such as wasteful and ideas in your mind show the implications of drug use.

It would be interesting to know whether they had these thoguhts while using, or are they able to reflect more clearly in rehab.

If it’s the former, that is what addiction is to me. When you continue to perform an action which has negative effects on yourself.

It’s a great first exhibition tackling a tough social subject, but does well in stimulating debate. I’m really excited to see future exhibitions.

Rating 4/5
21 September 2018 – 6th January 2019
Science Gallery, London Bridge

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