Olafur Eliasson on Art in an Era of Distraction

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“I have to deal with the fact that people walk through every exhibition, not just mine, with their phone in front of their face. What I think is going on is a sort of physical attention deficit, a new type of numbness. I think it’s a fair argument that there’s a sort of physical disconnect. But on the other side I see the increased democratisation of accessibility to culture and the demystifying of elitism in museums and of who owns the narrative. I would like to be positive, even though my art has lot to do with the phenomenology of tangibility. Now it’s up to me to find a way to react to that and come up with an answer to what is a revolution, whether I like it or not. The question is not whether I would consider making art where the phone is part of the experience, because the phone is a part of the work already, now I just need to find a way to deal with it.”

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