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Reflecting on The New Age of Humanism

Jun 15, 2020

Since late last year, TLmag and Formafantasma have been working together to create our latest Spring/Summer print-edition. A lot has changed between now and then, but one thing is sure: we are entering a new era of looking at and making for the world around us.

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Text by Lise Coirier
Cover Image Courtesy of Formafantasma / Credit: C41

Editorial TLmag 33 PE/SS_ Un Nouvel Âge de l’Humanisme /The New Age of Humanism

The soul suffers, signs, and renews itself, it’s the cycle of our future seasons unfolding. We are living in a spring that will forever be engraved in our bodies and our spirits. The flowers are budding on the trees, but humans have been pushed into the most extreme entrenchment. Confined at home, facing this vast, global epidemic, how will we ever get back to the normal course of our lives? The summery light of these past months has spared us from seeing only darkness, but it is harsh, even cruel for those without the mental and physical strength to overcome the trial. If man once again becomes the epicentre of the system, he will have to confront, as Japanese Nobel prize winner Kenzaburō Ōe says in his book, “Nip the buds, shoot the kids”, a “gigantic and mute forest, moving like an ocean”.

Natural elements have now become our principal references for resisting and working with the mutation inexorably occurring on our planet. We are experiencing the phenomenon of Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty, an entropy that the artists from Land Art and arte povera have highlighted for decades. The alliance of man and nature in the face of the aberrations of politics and the tearing of the socio-economic and cultural tissue seems to be an escape and a way to make peace with ourselves, to catch our breath. Michelangelo Pistoletto promotes the Terzo Paradiso (Third Paradise), Kenya Hara has dedicated himself to High Resolution Tours to rediscover tourism in Japan, Andreas Eriksson paints the textured landscapes like emotional mappings, Melanie De Biasio opens L’Alba to the heart of the dark landscapes of the city of Charleroi…,so many vibrant expressions and resilient voices to “make” this “new” world. With Cambio, co-curators Formafantasma opens a window onto new, possible scenarios.

The creation of values, solidarity, generosity, the act of “making” will pass through the human, with a respect that is even more conscious of and engaged in our environment, leaving more space to the hand-crafted with a burst of grace. We need time, the time of this New Age of Humanism.

Formafantasma on the four distinct cover images:

The images we selected for the covers of this issue of TLmag are stills from a film we developed for our exhibition Cambio at Serpentine Galleries in London. The exhibition focuses on the complex relationship between the extraction of timber from forests and the ecological implications of production. If we want to work on a new age of humanism we must be aware we can no longer do this isolated. The green square in the forest is a blank page, an invitation to reflect on how to construct a new world that considers the multispecies entanglements that life on planet earth is made of.

You can order your print copy of TLmag 33: ‘Un Nouvel Âge de l’Humanisme /The New Age of Humanism’ and/or subscribe to TLmag via our newly updated magazine’s store. TLmag is also available in the best bookstores and press stands worldwide and can be downloaded from Cafeyn here

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