Visual Compass by Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik

Learn about the radicalizing potential of digital images in the masterclass Visual Compass by exhibiting artists Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik. During this workshop, we will question the ethical use of visuals in the seemingly democratic online landscape, led by the artist duo and based on themes in their current exhibition GIGA.

Masterclass and guided tour

In this hands-on masterclass, we will create a map of visual culture within theme-focused groups, similar to a political compass. Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik will guide us through their current exhibition GIGA which explores topics such as meme culture, the appropriation of symbols, the relationship between fascism and current body trends, and much more.

In particular, we will look at the role of humour in spreading the alt-right ideology online. While humour is an element integral to social media, it is also often used to silence, discriminate or otherwise express violence, particularly against historically marginalised groups. The masterclass addresses the challenges of digital platforms recognizing the harms derived from humour, especially due to its ambiguous nature.

Gigapedia. Exhibition Glossary © Foam. Design by Hamid Sallali
Photography & Conflict, 2024 © Foam. Photo: Almichael Fraay.
Photography & Conflict, 2024 © Foam. Photo: Almichael Fraay.

About the exhibition GIGA

Right-wing extremism has been on the rise worldwide in recent years. The recent elections in the Netherlands have also made it clear that we live in a time of increasing polarization. According to Ganslmeier and Zibelnik, social media play a crucial role in this. The exhibition GIGA confronts us with the darkness that lurks behind the seemingly innocent visual language of social media. Images that are shared and distributed by many and at first glance appear to be pure entertainment, under the surface sow the seeds for far-right ideas.

With the exhibition GIGA, Foam aims not only to illustrate the complexity of image formation on social media, but also to contribute to the overall media literacy of users by creating more awareness about the images we scroll past or actively share and how radical propaganda can thereby penetrate our worldview unnoticed.

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Bereitschaft, 2024 © Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik.

The art work Redpilled is part of Houses of Darkness, a Paradox collaboration with three World War II memorial centres (Westerbork, Bergen-Belsen, Falstad) supported by Creative Europe and others (2021-2023). This project explored the notion of perpetrator perspectives in contemporary Nazi camp memorials.

GIGA – Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik is made in collaboration with Paradox.

This exhibition is made possible with the support of the Van Bijleveltstichting, the Leeuwensteinstichting, Mondriaan Fonds and Fonds ZOZ.

Foam is supported by the VriendenLoterij, Foam Members, the VandenEnde Foundation and the City of Amsterdam.

Computerized mouth with memes on teeth

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Visual Compass by Jakob Ganslmeier and Ana Zibelnik