When: On until 8th December 2013
Where: Dairy Art Centre, 7a Wakefield Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1PG
What is it?
Island is the final book published by Aldous Huxley in 1962. The protagonist of the book is Will Farnaby, a cynical journalist, who is shipwrecked on Pala, a fictional island. Huxley’s novel is the inspiration for the Dairy Art Centre’s latest exhibition, also called Island.
Entering the exhibition is like walking into the novel itself, from start to finish you go through sounds, emotions and sights that connect you with the novel’s character Farnaby. Constructed as multiple, unfolding chapters, of a novel, the Island exhibition captures various moments in Huxley’s 1962 book.
In the enclavic and psychic setting of Pala, new criteria for “value” lie in harmony, personal fulfillment, arts, architecture and the imagination. Eccentric solutions are found to old social problems, one regulator being the use of psychedelic drugs, tantra, rock climbing, multiple family structures, and collective and individual healing sessions.
Island celebrates both the psychedelic Sixties, the dissolution of conventional Western mores and identities, and the rise of new forms of awareness. As a novel, it is also a cautionary tale of the mindless exploitation of resources.
The exhibition follows the transformative steps of Bloomsbury-born protagonist Will Farnaby, observer, actor and catalyst. Within Island, Farnaby’s transformation is loosely organised around the intertwined experiences of crash, awakening, abundance, and self-betrayal.