Adapt to Survive: Artists imagine how our world might look and feel in the future

Marguerite Humeau HARRY II (BODY), 2017 Polystyrene, resin, fibreglass, white paint, acrylic parts, sprayed metal stand, water tanks, raptors – sourced on an anti-climbing security systems website – cast in artificial human skin, rubber, glass artificial Blood-sucking organ, artificial human blood, sound Stan Narten, JSP Photography Courtesy the artist and C L E A R I N G New York / Brussels

How will humans continue to survive years from now? The question is being explored in a new exhibition that brings together artworks by seven international artists who imagine how our world might look and feel in the future.

Engaging with the idea that adaptation is necessary for survival, featured works include films, sculpture and text-based installations that consider ideas of change and hybrid forms of architecture, biology, technology, and language.

Adapt to Survive: Notes from the Future at Southbank Centre's Hayward Gallery, is a collaboration with Concrete, Dubai, and takes its title from the phrase adopted in recent years by the business sector, while exploring the idea that Darwin’s theory of evolution can serve as a metaphor for a future-facing strategy for survival and growth. In recent years, "Adapt to Survive" has been the mantra of entrepreneurial start-ups and professional "change-makers", suggesting a fast-paced form of agency that is antithetical to Darwin’s concept of natural selection.

At the same time, futurology has become established as an area of research combining game theory, statistics, and speculation. Responding to these cultural shifts, the artists in Adapt to Survive make educated guesses about our society’s evolution and progression, but equally, convey uncertainty and scepticism about our accelerating patterns of growth and consumption.

Adapt to Survive: Notes from the Future at HENI Project Space, Southbank Centre’s Hayward Gallery runs until 11 June 2018. Find out more at southbankcentre.co.uk.

Bedwyr Williams Tyrrau Mawr, 2016 © Bedwyr Williams Courtesy of the artist

Bedwyr Williams Tyrrau Mawr, 2016 © Bedwyr Williams Courtesy of the artist

Julian Charrière Detail of Metamorphism XLIX, 2016 © Julian Charrière, VG Bild-kunst, Bonn, Courtesy DITTRICH & SCHLECHTRIEM, Berlin Photo credit: Hans-Georg Gaul

Julian Charrière Detail of Metamorphism XLIX, 2016 © Julian Charrière, VG Bild-kunst, Bonn, Courtesy DITTRICH & SCHLECHTRIEM, Berlin Photo credit: Hans-Georg Gaul