In October Galleria Kuvitus will be hosting “The Machine Stops”, a private show featuring a series of illustrations and sketches based on the 1909 short story “The Machine Stops” by E.M. Forster. It is a personal project of illustrator Daniel Stolle in collaboration with Marco Kindler von Knobloch of Multiple.
They’ve been intrigued by a story that is 110 years old – and the questions it raises today. ”Are we already too hooked on the machines in our palms or can we still lift our gaze to look into each other’s eyes?”, they ask.
“The Machine Stops” tells of a future in which people have given away their freedom, agency, and thirst for life in exchange for safety, comfort, and entertainment. Humans have measured themselves and built a machine to fit their needs. It is at first a disorienting story with its 19th-century technology such as air-ships or pneumatic mail. But it is in its imagined future technologies, like video phone calls, tablets, and smart homes, where we cannot overlook the parallels to our contemporary lives.
“We are building our own machine right now. We are connected to many. We talk less and less to only one. We always document and broadcast. We seldom look twice or actively listen. We are endlessly busy. We rarely reflect on what we are doing and why.”
“This is a project in progress. We are interpreting a text, but we are also exploring our personal and sometimes separate views of the future. Things are dark, but we do not want to show a dystopia – a theme all too common in the entertainment our machines give us lately. Desperation or aspiration – our work is a dialogue to find one voice to walk this line.”
Adapted and edited from the original text written by Marco Kindler von Knobloch and Daniel Stolle.
Marco Kindler von Knobloch is a graphic designer living in Madrid, Spain.
Daniel Stolle (s. 1982) is a German-Finnish illustrator living and working in Kyröskoski, Finland. Among his clients are The New York Times, The Guardian, DIE ZEIT, Der Spiegel, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster and many more.