Proxima-B is an extra-planetary resort, capitalizing on the replicable experiences of luxury resorts on earth and translating the pristine pools, expansive views and lush lounges to alien landscapes. As space tourism develops - offering suborbital space flights, or vacations on luxury space stations, Proxima-B visualizes the next step - human inhabitation of other planets. There have been over fifty planets identified that may potentially support life. The closest of these planets - Proxima Centauri B, an exo-planet orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri - is thirteen lightyears away, and as technology develops there will be no shortage of potential planets for human inhabitation. This resort, placed in untouched landscapes offers a vacation free from the troubles of the earth with climate control and terraforming, the environment has been altered to be perfectly suited for human leisure. Scan the promotional posters and postcards to see a real-time AR view of the resorts as they have settled into the landscape of Proxima Centauri B.
"As a technology that blurs the boundaries of virtual and physical as well as reality and fiction, AR lends itself to science fiction. Adrienne Matheuszik’s Proxima-B (2021) capitalizes on AR’s world-building capacity. This body of work consists of an outdoor billboard and an indoor pop-up travel agency. Located on Dupont Street, just west of InterAccess, the billboard depicts all the trappings of a luxury resort against an exotic intergalactic terrain. The picturesque destination is a remote, uninhabited place where time passes slowly. These qualities can also be observed in the postcards featured in the travel agency, which depict the same luxurious pool, a hotel room with a superior view of the extraterrestrial landscape, and a serene private patio. Proxima-B imitates and deconstructs the visual strategies of social media travel marketing. The tourist imagery seen in Matheuszik’s work has a legacy rooted in the colonial project of presenting travel destinations as vacant, devoid of local inhabitants, and thus ready for consumption. Upon activating the AR image markers, these images of a fantasy getaway reveal a dilapidated resort that has been taken over by otherworldly decay. The artist deliberately denies the viewer visual, mental, and physical access to this resort, planet, and future. Instead, beholders must stay where they are and remain accountable to the environmental, social, and political ailments of our present moment."
Curator, Karie Laio 2021