The exhibition and the symposium ‘The Camille Diaries: New Artistic Positions on M/Otherhood, Life and Care’ (at ArtLaboratoryBerlin) presents new artistic works by eleven international artists:- Sonia Levy, Mary Maggic, Naja Ryde Ankarfeldt, Baum & Leahy, Špela Petric, Margherita Pevere, Ai Hasegawa, Nicole Clouston, Cecilia Jonsson and Tarah Rhoda. 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.
Charlotte Jarvis is an artist and lecturer working at the intersection of art and science. Her practice often utilises living cells and DNA: “I have recorded music onto DNA, seen my heart beat outside of my body and am currently making the world’s first female sperm. My work explores the body as a liminal space – a site for transformation, hybridisation and magic”. In Posse is a work In progress: “A mission to make ‘female’ sperm from my own stem cells”.
Jasmine Pradissitto is an international artist, innovator, and speaker with a background in physics based in London. Inspired by nature, the human condition, the mythopoetic and a more sustainable future, her forms create a commentary on an unsustainable, increasingly Anthropocene world slowly being reshaped by the things we consume and then disregard. She creates work that builds awareness about diminishing air quality and biodiversity extinction.
Pei-Ying Lin is an artist / designer from Taiwan and currently based in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Her main focus is on the combination of science and human society through artistic methods and is particularly interested in building a common discussion ground for different cultural perspectives regarding elements that construct our individual perception of the world.
Heather Dewey-Hagborg is an artist and biohacker who is interested in art as research and technological critique. Her controversial biopolitical art practice includes the project ‘Stranger Visions’ in which she created portrait sculptures from analyses of genetic material (hair, cigarette butts, chewed up gum) collected in public places.
This piece of writing is an exploration of our interconnectedness with nature through the conscious and unconscious parts of the mind. It interweaves poetry, art and the imaginal with neuroscience and depth psychology to explore our troubled relationship to the natural world and also to ourselves. It is written from the imagined viewpoint of a migratory bird that has become marginalised from the conscious mind but which appears conceptually in a dream. This is similar to how, collectively, inner environmental values of society might have become marginalised from outer agency. It proposes that by facilitating these inner depths through art, collective transformation and more pro-environmental behaviour may occur.
“The power of the natural world, its intrinsic energy and fundamental properties, is dependent upon a fine balance. The balance of positive and negative forces resides from the smallest particles that make up our universe to concepts we live with every day: night/day and dark/light; finite/infinite and one/zero; quiet/loud and soft/hard; organic/manmade and the natural environment as opposed to the constructed cities. My work has been centered on concepts of this balance of opposites, as well as methods of numerical systems and patterning we use to construct an order to our world.”
Catherine Eaton Skinner’s works incorporate painting and encaustic, sculpture, printmaking, and photography. The figure, both human and animal, is an important element in her work and acts as a source of inspiration and exploration of identity, spirit and the paradoxes of human existence. She discusses her life and work in ‘Ancient Ritual in Contemporary Mark-Making’.
This text looks to undo assumptions of creative individuals existing apart from dynamic material relations. Following a material ecocriticism ethos, it describes many simultaneous instances of materials affecting the narrative or meaning-making potential within human art practice, specifically in recounted moments from an artist residency taking place within collective gardens where plants were made into paints. In developing Sara Ahmed’s refrain of ‘use’ coming before, during or after relations, the creative tendency to find potential in pre-existing materials, using them differently, is proposed as a life-sustaining mode, like that of Margulis’ Serial Endosymbiosis Theory.
SKY is an exhibition, curated by Stephen Nowlin, that invites visitors to ponder both the provincial and universal elements of space above and around the Earth’s surface. This group exhibition demonstrates how the unfolding realities exposed by new science are affecting change in the understanding of ourselves, our planet and beyond. The SKY exhibition features works of contemporary art, science artifacts and historical objects displayed equally and side-by-side, blurring boundaries and distinctions between domains usually separated by convention and differing periods of history.
This essay considers projects by two multimedia artists working in Scotland to propose that culture and local ecology are inseparable and mutually-determining aspects of our understanding of and care for place. The work of Inge Thomson and Deirdre Nelson encompasses material cultures and oral traditions, with an emphasis on marine environments, creating new narratives of passage as works of advocacy for ‘vernacular, community-based ecology’.