Ben Evans James
Curator - Producer - Filmmaker

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The Theory of Concentric Spheres (2018)



In April 2018, South Kiosk presented The Theory of Concentric Spheres, a journey into hollow earth – a place of ‘giants, Germans and just a little sun’.

A belief in spirits and souls wandering within a hollow earth beneath our feet have existed ever since man first sought faith in celestial beings. Pre-eminent thinkers of their time, including Edmund Halley (Halley’s Comet) reasoned that the earth was made up of a series of concentric spheres within which a sun and life could be sustained; a lush paradise on the flip side of the earth able to nourish humans up too 15ft tall. No sooner had scientists speculated on the existence of a hollow earth did explorers begin to plot its discovery with theories developing of entry points in both the North and South Pole.

South Kiosk explored a journey to the centre of hollow earth through a series of four screening programmes.

Films in The Brink explored aspects of our technologically driven lives on the surface, machine ways of seeing the world that may enable or provide the motivation for us to escape and explore new worlds for human habitation. Films ranged from James Bridle’s questioning of autonomous driving systems to Joey Holder’s look at the perpetuation of myths on the internet.

The films in Wide Open Poles descended into hollow earth, an exploration of the geological through minerals and their relationship to technological infrastructures. Films include Abigail Reynold’s exploration of the vestiges of industry on the UK’s Cornish coastline to Emma Charles’ investigation of the Pionen Data Center constructed from a decommissioned nuclear bunker within the bedrock of Stockholm’s White Mountain district (scripted by Jussi Parikka).

The Habitable Within explored a search for personal utopias, from Ben Rivers docu-fiction film of the failed development of Biosphere 2 in the 1990’s, (an experiment that aimed to mimic our planet’s life systems in a prototype for future colonies on Mars) to Naheed Raza’s look at those chasing eternal life through cryogenics.

As Observed from Above pulls out from hollow earth to observe the world from the sky. Hito Steyerl’s In Free Fall traces networks of global capitalism through the extraordinary journey of an airplane from the centre of an international hostage incident to being blown up in a Hollywood movie. 

Screening Programme at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade, Serbia, (2018)

Artists: Joey Holder, James Bridle, Alan Warburton, Ben Rivers, Naheed Raza, Myles Painter, Tom Kobialka, Emma Charles, Dana Giurescu, Abigail Reynolds, Maeve Brennan, Hito Steyerl

Curated by Ben Evans James
Assisted by: Dave Charlesworth and Jake Biernat