The dystopian future of Liam Young

September 12, 2022 | nadiaevangelina

The exhibition "Liam Young. Building worlds", show us the capacity of technology to alter society and new worlds. The artist exhibits six video installations, two of them created for the occasion, at the Espacio Fundación Telefónica, a space created by the telephone company that connects society, culture, and technology.

"Building worlds" by Liam Young. Fundación Telefónica
Throughout the proposal, the Australian architect and filmmaker address the repercussions of the use of technology in our lives and in the cities that we inhabit, combining fiction and reality. The tour begins with "In the Robot Skies" (2019), an experimental short film made with autonomous drones that were programmed with individual behaviors and cinematic criteria of their own. It stars two teenagers who hack the surveillance mechanisms used to keep them apart and send each other love letters. The plot aims to encourage debate on the potential uses of drones as cultural objects and not only for military purposes.

For its part, "New City" (2015) is composed of a set of visions of cities of the not-too-distant future, projecting new cultural, political, economic, and environmental forces and trends. The animations have been made from photographs taken on expeditions and are accompanied by texts by science fiction writers. "Where the city can't see" (2019), a short fiction film shot entirely with laser scanners, proposes a tour of a near-future city through the eyes of the robots that control it.

The works "Planet City" (2021) and "The Great Endeavour" (2022), an unpublished piece, discuss climate change and pose an urgent analysis of the environmental questions we are already facing today. The exhibition closes with "The Emissary," a post-apocalyptic piece, also created for this exhibition. For this work, Young designed, together with NASA professionals, a fictitious spaceship made of non-obsolete materials, which would eternally transmit what we are today. It would be a testimony that one day we existed and also a sort of funeral.

Forgotten landscapes, alien terrains, and industrial ecologies make up the imaginary of Liam Young's work. The installations of this artist, although fictional, are based on a deep and detailed investigation in which design, the study of futures, and the creation of powerful audiovisual narratives converge. The exhibition leaves the viewer reflecting but also leaves a positive message: we must bet on hope against fear and anxiety and put ourselves into action, understanding the future more as a state.

"Liam Young. Building worlds"
Location: Fundación Telefónica, Arenales 1540, C1061 CABA, Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Opening Date: 20th May 2022
End Date: 20th November 2022
Working hours: Monday-Saturday: 2pm to 8.30pm
Official website: 

Participating Artist:

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