Exhibition - Agency of Living Organisms - | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián

Agency of Living Organisms

Agency of Living Organisms

The exhibition Agency of Living Organisms, curated by Pauline Doutreluingne, a Belgian independent curator and visual researcher, takes as its starting point the relationship between social structures and nature, from the point of view of contemporary art. It features an international group of 13 artists: Anne Duk Hee Jordan, Esther Kokmeijer, Gerard Ortín, Iain Ball, Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum, Lara Almarcegui, Maider López, New Mineral Collective, Tere Recarens, Tue Greenfort, El Conde de Torrefiel, Koenraad van den Driessche and Nader Koochaki.

Agency of Living Organisms is an exhibition that shows the interaction and communication between phenomena within different ecosystems that exist in the lithosphere, the atmosphere, the biosphere and the hydrosphere. The works and artists selected for the show approach, from different perspectives, the footprint humans are leaving on the planet. Nature is being moulded by humanity, generating a new form of nature. This consists of the sum of all the changes caused by human beings to the earth; the technosphere and the biosphere interact to form neo-natural phenomena. The artists, scientists and graphic designers, who were selected to participate in Agency of Living Organisms take an observing and critical position in relation to the surrounding and interactive spheres. They bring new visions and zoom in on details and relationships in our environment that we usually do not perceive. The agents do not shy away to question the ubiquitous classification and value systems and their poetic experiments open up a new view on the world, as a mental ecology.

The impetus comes from a micro-scale observation: compared to humans, plants and other living organisms have a different, sometimes surprisingly sophisticated sensorium with which they interact and exist within their surroundings. Similarly this sensibility towards its immediate environment is a characteristic of the artists among us. In such, this project offers a research for the interaction between both of those protagonists.

This exhibition emerged from a residency that took place exactly a year ago, in November 2015. Pauline Doutreluingne's project was selected in the first open call for a curating residency at Tabakalera. Out of the 75 proposals submitted, the jury made up of Laurence Rassel, Marta Ponsa and Inazio Eskudero chose the one put forward by Doutreluingne. Thus, this Belgian researcher spent a four-week stay in San Sebastián working on the execution of her project. She was able to visit and get to know artists and scientists in the area, as well as projects and places that could be of interest for her research, such as the surrounding mountains and rivers and the flysch rock formations of Zumaia.

The project proposes an exhibition with interconnected commissioned and existing works as a social living sculpture, an expanding format that opens the walls of the Tabakalera's exhibition halls into the urban, natural and ‘online’ environment at www.agencyoflivingorganisms.com.





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In collaboration with:


Independent curator and visual researcher. 


Company directed by Tanya Beyeler and Pablo Gisbert






Platform run by Emilija Skarnulyte and Tanya Busse