October 9 – November 17, 2020. Opening: October 8, at 18.00
Location: The National Library of Latvia
As this year’s festival is a collaboration with “Ecodata–Ecomedia–Ecoaesthetics” research group led by researcher and theorist Yvonne VOLKART, (Basel, Switzerland), it’s featured event is the ECODATA Exhibition, taking place in the Exhibition Hall of The National Library of Latvia, from October 9 – November 17, 2020.
The ECODATA exhibition is the central axis of the festival, around which the rest of the programme is formed. The aim of this exhibition is to close the gap between technological and ecological, as well as to incorporate technological issues in ecological art.
The exhibition features twenty artworks by internationally acknowledged artists working in the field of media art, science, and ecology – Ursula BIEMANN (CH), Sarah BURGER (CH), Marcus MAEDER (CH), Francois KNOETZE (ZA), Diana SCHERER (NL/DE), Maayke SCHURER (CA), SEMICONDUCTOR (UK), Rasa SMITE (LV), Raitis SMITS (LV), Susana SOARES (PT), Tamiko THIEL and /P (US/DE), Leena and Oula A. VALKEAPÄÄ (FI), VARVARA & MAR (EE/ES), Elaine WHITTAKER (CA).
The exhibition opening programme takes place on October 8-9, 2020, including the ECODATA discussion with the participation of invited scientist Kaisa RISSANEN and keynote speakers, scientists and artists-researchers of “Ecodata–Ecomedia–Ecoaesthetics” project – Marcus MAEDER, Rasa SMITE and Yvonne VOLKART.
The “Ecodata” research project, on which is based the concept of the exhibition and festival, investigates sensing techniques in the arts in view of understanding their role for the perception of nonhuman modes of existence. It intends both to bring the question of the technological into the ecological arts and to bridge the gap between them. The project is composed of a theoretical and practice part which is documented here: each of the artists-researchers Marcus Maeder, Rasa Smite and Aline Veillat develops an individual aesthetic approach relative to the alpine forest Pfynwald. They do so in close cooperation with the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research who has been monitoring this forest for more than 25 years. The Pfynwald is old, its pines settled as pioneer plants after the last ice age and lasted until the 20th century. Only the fluorine emissions of the local aluminium industry since 1908 as well as the increased drought caused by climate change caused the pine to die to such an extent that already 50% of the pine population is dead. It is unclear whether the pine population will be destemmed or replaced by drought-resistant trees such as the downy oak that have migrated from the south. The future is unclear. But clear is that the Pfynwald is a globally unique outdoor lab forecasting possible scenarios in the time of climate change. Questions arise how these data might affect us and trigger care, solidarity and empathy for the multi-species inhabitants of planet Earth?
Further information about the ECODATA exhibition: