Saša Spačal: Earthlink
The exhibition by Saša Saša Spačal, an artist working at the intersection of intermedia art, exploration of living systems and audio frequencies, links Earth to the post-human present, that includes both a seed of the future as well as a shadow of the past.
"The relational capacity of the posthuman subject is not confined within our species, but it includes all non-anthropomorphic elements, beginning with the air we breathe."
Saša Spačal's biotechnological installation in Match Gallery aims to serve as an entrance point to the post-anthropocentric constellation of connections and environmental relations, which enable a more dynamic and sustainable perception of human activity within the environment. Changes are immersed in infinite micro and macro planetary feedback loops which are for humanity even as a self-proclaimed geological force difficult to grasp in all their complexity.
Earth is immersed in a planetary metabolism of matter circulating through the lithosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere. Biogeochemical circulation between spheres is catalyzed by feedbacks of microbial metabolism which combine all biological and technological agents in an all-encompassing flow, an intra_flux of exchanges and relationships. Inhalation and exhalation are intimate processes that bind humans to the planet, but what happens when this connection becomes technologically mediated? What will the dosage be, who will prescribe it and who will survive?
The exhibition links Earth to the post-human present, that includes both a seed of the future as well as a shadow of the past. The present as a seed of the future is experienced in the Inspiration installation, where the visitor inhales earth's "happiness bacteria" Mycobacterium vaccae. The inflation and deflation of resuscitator bags dictates the rhythm of breathing which calms the visitor and instills dreams of a bright technocratic future. A moment of impermanence and passing takes place at the Expiration installation where one can transfer their personal microbiome to exteriorized lungs by breathing out. Droplets of the graveyard cypress Cupressus sempervirens extract persistently wash away these microbial communities. However, all human excrements cannot be washed away so they burn out on the dry land they pollute. Between the almost-past and almost-present stands the Simbiom installation with red clover Trifolium pratense and the Rhizobium bacteria, which in symbiotic relationship produce oxygen and fix nitrogen, both crucial for human survival.
Saša Spačal (Ljubljana) works at the intersection of intermedia art, exploration of living systems and audio frequencies. Her focus is the post-human continuum, where humans exist and act as one of the elements of the ecosystem instead of its centre. Her works have been exhibited at Ars Electronica (AT), National Art Museum of China (CH), Prix Cube (FR), Transmediale (DE), Museum of Contemporary Art Metelkova (SI), Onassis Cultural Center (GR), Cynetart Festival (DE), Kapelica Gallery (SI), Device_art (HR), Art Laboratory Berlin (DE) and other venues. For her work, Spačal received international awards and nominations.
Production: Museum and Galleries of Ljubljana
Co-production: Projekt Atol institution
Curator: Jani Pirnat
Artist: Saša Spačal
Consultation, microbiology: Dr Mirjan Švagelj
Glasswork: Pero Kolobarić, Zvonko Drobnič
Construction: Anil Podgornik, Scenart, Ambrož Modrijan
Special thanks to: Jurij Krpan
This project has been made possible by: City of Ljubljana
1 January, 1 November, 25 December: Closed
24 and 31 December: 10:00–14:00
On 6 November at the Match Gallery we are opening the Earthlink exhibition by Saša Spačal, an artist working at the intersection of intermedia art, exploration of living systems and audio frequencies.