Light box by Matthew Higgs
Light box by Matthew Higgs

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Tomorrow's World #2

A two‐man exhibition and ongoing collaboration by Dave Evans & Robin Tarbet


May-June 2012


Tomorrow’s World#2 is an exhibition of working ideas and material experiments which aim to create an open dialogue with the audience in a gallery environment. Beginning at Manchester’s Rogue Project Space in early 2012 and now in its second edition at Project Number, the collaboration brings together two artists who examine the material residue of technological progress. Evans and Tarbet’s re-workings of past visions of the future and more recent obsolete technologies attempts to make a concrete punctuation in the unceasing forward flow of perpetual growth; to not only explore the ideology of progress under the conditions of late capitalism, but also question the polemic nature of technological progress itself.

Today we live in a technologically driven society where the latest innovation soon becomes outdated and obsolete. Internal systems are automatically updated, infrastructure is invisible and knowledge is hidden behind a plastic façade accessible to only a few. The New Millennium is not the science fiction inspired futuristic landscape as promised in our 80s childhoods. Time has passed, technology has advanced, but when a common device fails most of us are rendered helpless. Economically, a machine’s failure is just another disposable material casualty: the product of a culture of consumption that frequently highlights our own human vulnerability, assuming the role of being mere operators with only a vague understanding of the tools we depend upon. Tomorrow’s world is a failed concept: an impossible prediction, but a spectacular opportunity for re‐examining and questioning our present reality. Evans and Tarbet are not nostalgic of the past or pining for the future, but as artists are keen to explore the ideological and material world around them to consider the notion of progress.

Dave Evans explores the passage of time, and its subsequent labeling as history, the past, present and future. Recent works examine the transient nature of future narratives and their collision with the everyday reality of the fleeting present, looking at how the history of science fiction can be viewed as a series of failed attempts at imagining a future, which, by its very nature, is unknowable. In his work, this failure and transience is explored through building basic units of futuristic imagining using no allusion to permanence. Materials used retain a fragility, foil, paper, cardboard, are held together with string, or pins, or gravity, and although these objects ‘fly,’ there is no pretence to actual flight, objects are elevated or hung. Evans also employs other esoteric mediums, including sound, computer generated animation and video, to explore the subjective nature of time.


Dave Evans (born 1975, Liverpool) studied at the Royal College of Art and is an artist and lecturer based in Liverpool. He is also director and studio member at the Royal Standard, an artist run space in Liverpool.

Robin Tarbet's practice is concerned with the physical materiality of everyday technology, and he approaches familiar consumer products from a wondrous and inquiring perspective. Tarbet assumes the role of a curious folk scientific explorer, which leads him to dismantle, dissect, and distort everyday technologies and appliances. Aesthetically he examines the architectural and conceptual similarities of the built environment to the increasingly technological yet mysterious worlds within. His work questions the stuff that is concealed on the inside of a computer, or whether there is anything to find behind the façade of the television screen. As far as searching for answers or technical understanding his approach deliberately adopts the material function of failure, inefficiency, and he utilizes the resistance of the objects in providing any new knowledge that can be applied. Tarbet's aim is not to reveal any secrets, but his curiosity is with uncovering an often eclectic and mysterious collection of real bits and pieces that with few visible moving parts or automated actions, work together to create the products desired function. It is with this real stuff that his own fascination with perceived reality, illusion and the unusual effects of scale and perspective combine. As an artist he substitutes his precise lack of mundane understanding with the notion of play, imagination and the potential for what could be, rather than what is.


Robin Tarbet (born 1981, Bath) studied at the Royal College of Art and is an artist and lecturer based in London. He is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art Foundation Studies at Kingston University, and a Visiting Lecturer in Fine Art at Norwich University College of Art and Design.

For further information about the exhibition or to arrange a viewing please contact Project Number or email directly or

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