The exhibition title The Camille Diaries alludes to a text by philosopher and biologist Donna Haraway (“Staying with the Trouble”, 2016). In it she creates science fiction scenarios of a dwindling human population, which replaces birth with care between species. Humans cultivate the genetic makeup of endangered species (such as that monarch butterfly) by incorporating nonhuman genetic material in their own DNA. The topic of biotechnological configurations of human bodies – a central moment in the text – places people on the periphery and rather draws our full attention to other living beings. This creates a basic understanding of other species and organisms from a feminist perspective.
The exhibition Camille Diaries. Current artistic Positions on M/Otherhood, Life and Care presents new artistic works by eleven international artists (installations, video, objects, performance). Under the current conditions of our world (the environmental crises, gender aspects, biopolitics, etc.), the artists reflect the term “motherhood” in a greatly expanded form, namely as a ‘taking care of’, as an interpersonal relationship. Here, the world is understood as a life in which we are all involved (people, plants, animals, the environment) – on a molecular, organic, ethical and biopolitical level. The artistic positions examine reproductive mechanisms, biochemical connections between humans and animals, critically reflect on the female reproductive organs and refer to alternative biomaterials as the “source of life” in times of raw material shortages and the food crisis.
Sonia Levy‘s 2-channel video installation For the Love of Corals is a cinematic inquiry that focuses on the daily labour of caring for endangered beings to resuscitate them from their imminent human-induced extinction.
Mary Maggic‘s work milik bersama rekombinan explores the surreal landscape of an urban Indonesian river colonized by plastic, with toxic implications for nearby inhabitants.
For their project Mammalga Naja Ankerfeldt and Baum & Leahy find inspiration in the life remediating abilities of the algae as well as ways of m/othering or making kin in algal family patterns.
In Špela Petric‘s installation Phytoteratology, thale cress embryos have been grown in a bath of chemicals from the artist’s own body, resulting in a biochemical chimera with the artist as ‘co-mother’.
Margherita Pevere‘s Wombs features scientific glassware hosting living bacterial colonies producing flesh-like biofilm, growing in a liquid environment infused with the artist’s own hormones, and a photographic series.
Ai Hasegawa proposes a transspecies act of motherhood in her work I Wanna Deliver a Dolphin…
Nicole Clouston‘s artwork Mud (Berlin) takes the form of 15 rectangular, acrylic prisms filled with organisms growing from mud taken from Berlin’s lakes and rivers.
In Haem artist Cecilia Jonsson and scientist Rodrigo Leite de Oliveira have created a compass by deriving iron from the blood protein haemoglobin of donated human placentas.
Meanwhile Tarah Rhoda‘s Ourglass is a tribute to the remarkable alliance between plants and animals through the photosynthesis and respiration.
THE CAMILLE DIARIES.
New Artistic Positions on M/otherhood, Life and Care
Exhibition: 28 August – 4 October 2020
@ Art Laboratory Berlin, Prinzenallee 34 and OKK, Prinzenallee 29, 13359 Berlin
Opening Hours: Thu – Sun, 2 – 6 pm
Current health rules!
THE CAMILLE DIARIES Symposium
26 September 2020, 10 am – 7:45 pm CET Time Zone, with livestream
The one-day symposium will bring the artists together with researchers from the humanities and natural sciences into a critical dialogue. In the panels “M/others, wombs and placentas”, “Fluid Inheritance” and “Modes of care” we will discuss current and alternative concepts. On the basis of the exhibited works, we will discuss approaches like “Collective survival” and “Arts of noticing” (A. Tsing), “Staying with the Trouble” (D. Haraway), and in particular “Bodies of water” connected to hydrofeminism (A. Neimanis).
Regine Rapp & Christian de Lutz (curators)
Further information on exhibition and artists – CAMILLE DIARIES__2020 Exhibition Exposé__including Keywords + Pics
All images copyright and courtesy of the exhibition artists and ArtLaboratoryBerlin
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