THE GAME. Electricity and digital revolution. An exhibition inspired by the book of Alessandro Baricco
From september 30 2022 to february 28 2023.
The Museum of Electrical Technology of Pavia offers a fascinating journey, conceived with Scuola Holden, to tell the story of the last 40 years of technological evolution that have radically changed the life of each of us.
The exhibition, curated by Carlo Berizzi and Francesco Pietra, guide through the “epochs” of the digital revolution, presents the protagonists, investigates the past and raises the technology towards the future. At the entrance to the museum we can experience firsthand the change told by Baricco; playing table football, a pinball machine and Space Invaders, we realize that, little by little, in the passage from one game to another everything becomes more abstract, artificial, lighter and we are captured by a new reality made up of screens, keyboards and codes.
Our journey starts from the Classical era (1981-1997) in which the digitization of texts, images and sounds takes place, the first PC and the network are created. The IBM PC, the famous Commodore 64, the digital camera, the first emails, are all part of this period in which a new system of information circulation is being developed. Search engines are born to navigate this new world and the first online sales begin.
In the era of colonization (1999-2007), digital approaches everyone, social networks are created and smartphones come on the market, all novelties that allow you to always stay connected with digital; Wikipedia, YouTube but also Linkedin, MySpace and Facebook open, places take shape to share not only information and data but also our history and everyday life, we find iconic objects from our recent past such as the Kindle, the BlackBerry Quark or the first iPhone.
Finally, we arrive at the age of the Game, the years we are living in, where everything runs fast and the distance between man and machine is getting smaller and smaller, where technology can solve small everyday problems and reality offers us an “augmented humanity” . A completely connected life, in which there is no longer a distinction between the real world and the digital world, where apps such as Netflix, WhatsApp, Uber, iCloud or TikTok manage a good part of our day; while applications, augmented and virtual reality, voice assistants interact, perform tasks and communicate with humans, but they are only the preview of a new horizon yet to be discovered: artificial intelligence.
An extensive corpus of technological tools, graphics, newspaper articles, illustrations and a detailed timeline lead to know the protagonists of this change, the key steps that caused it and help to reflect on the revolution that has taken place in the last forty years, both about everyday objects, both in the society that created them and made them indispensable. A video installation by the TWOSHOT creative studio animates three tables on which the most iconic pieces of the different eras are placed, making the central space of the exhibition immersive, animating the technological products and amplifying the connections between them. A touch screen allows you to browse an important selection of articles and front pages from the Corriere della Sera archive that relate technological evolution with the main events of recent history.
The exhibition, organized by Andrea Vaccari – A7Design, also features portraits of the protagonists of the Game reworked by the artist Alessandro D’Aquila.
You live the experience of the Game through two paths that intertwine the history of the Museum of Electric Technology: the Master Path extends throughout the museum, traces the history of electricity – from the Volta battery to the Eta Beta II nuclear fusion generator – and narrates the inventions that led us to the Age of the Game; the Explorer Path, on the other hand, introduces directly to the Game Room and the story of the digital revolution, giving the possibility at a later time to move freely around the museum and to deepen the issues that interest most. It is also possible to be guided by the Connections represented by objects from the museum collection that combine the history of electricity with that of the Game. These elements are reinterpreted with the eyes of those who “live” in the digital world: the telegraph represents the first dematerialization of communication, the turbines tell about the availability of electricity for everyone, the various telephones evolve towards a fast and mass connection.
Some workshops enrich the event: “Smonting” proposes the disassembly of old computers to understand how they work by playing, “Enigma Machine” explores the mysterious world of encrypted codes, others deal with the themes of electricity and Cyber Bullying. The workshops and guided tours are organized with the collaboration of ADMaiora, Ondivaghiamo and comPVter.
Lectio Magistralis by Alessandro Baricco – hursday september 29 at 11:00, Salone Teresiano University of Pavia
Opening – Thursday september 29 at 18:00
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