The chosen theme named „Biophilia” is based on the relation of all living systems on the planet Earth (Edward O. Wilson). I am involving a new research method of an organic, grown material named SCOBY, which is used as an acronym for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. During my research, I came across on new artistic solutions by transforming the cultivated and natural material to a new hybrid species. They carry important information related to our environment and to the current, complex processes. The series of Biophilia mostly cover and focus on new organic painting materials, thus promoting new aesthetics, with a direction towards examining the relationship between man and nature, which also includes the fields of ecological art and Bio Art in the form of various visual media such as: paintings, drawings, videos, objects, installations.
The name of the series „An introduction to Biophilia” is the beginning segment of a cycle and research of natural materials. These works take the form of a miniature experiment, notes of thought in technological research.
During the creative process, a characteristic scenario is the creation of an ambiance of a laboratory, which carries its elements with it. I use various materials and objects such as: jars, swabs, spoons, socks, Petri dishes, sample archiving boxes, glass tubes, bottles with pigments, etc. By applying the following materials, they become part of the creative process and they also turn into a ready-made object. On the occasion of exhibition, I present the tools with which the grown material SCOBY is created. Involving the whole process of creation is a work of art to me.
(Photography: Elvira Kakuszi and Edvárd Molnár)
The series „Biophilia: Modified origin” includes various research forms, which include a series of light boxes. Symbolism of strong light and colors that illuminate the delicate noble natural material SCOBY have their ironic meaning, stating a consumer approach, that is, a simulation of our choices of making the right decision. I create an organic image with the help of a biological process from SCOBY.
Material: SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) and hemp
Dimension: 170 x 100 x 6 cm
Gallery “Šok zadruga” Novi Sad, Serbia. (2020)
Contemporary Gallery Subotica, Serbia. (2020)
MODIFIED ORIGIN I.
The work consists of different sized pieces of dehydrated and fixed cellulose, which I stack on top of each other to obtain the desired density of the material. By collating the plant base materials on a glass, the work takes an abstract form. The observer should get the desire to get as close as possible to see more details, smell or touch the material. Uncertain contact with nature in man’s subconscious mind is always present. The „effect of biophilia” is to stimulate the production of serotonin, which is a healthy and happy hormone, while observing a part of nature and having contact with something that is natural. Therefore, works from the Biophilia series, made by natural process will be enriched with elements of color and light, and will have the function of a light box. From an artificial source, the texture and condition of the bacterial cellulose will be even more emphasized. Playing with the connection of the observers and the works themselves, they gain interactivity, dynamics and ambiance in space. By applying artificial light and technology, I inject man’s power to manipulate nature. They can change the colors as they desire to get a better feel of the work.
MODIFIED ORIGIN II.
The work is based on similar samples and pieces of SCOBY, which were cultivated in a bigger sized container. During the cultivation my experiment was to get healthy SCOBY pieces and to implement them to the glass, while also playing with another new material. I used hemp as a base, which holds the cellulose together. The preparation includes washing the SCOBY and soaking it in hot water with some homemade or baby soap. Afterwards it is dried. The dehydration process depends on the thickness of the material. My method is to place the fresh cellulose pieces inside the box on the glass (with the hemp) and to let them dry completely. The material, as it is, can be sticky and I used that to my advantage to fixate them to the glass (natural glue). Preparation and fixation is made with extra virgin olive oil, which protects the material from various outdoor exposure such as moisture. The finished piece consists of clean SCOBY shapes with the details such as brown pigmentation or bubbliness, which appear during the dehydration. When the lightbox is turned on (with white led lights), the richness of the material with textures and shapes is much more visibly defined.
MODIFIED ORIGIN III.
The work is based on different samples and pieces of SCOBY, which were made in various glass jars and containers. During the cultivation my experiment was to check how the bacterial cellulose is responding to different conditions like: light/dark space, inside and outside of the laboratory. I also check how the jars/containers react in different surroundings. The material gets “moldy” on the surface because of dust, room temperature variations or other factors if they are influencing the symbiosis and the whole growing process. To get good SCOBY, it is important to keep the beverage in balanced room temperature and Ph level. The finished piece is filled with different natural colors of prepared cellulose, rich with textures and shapes. The work includes also another material – hemp, which I used in the second lightbox. When the white led lights are turned on, the work opens another aesthetic dimension to the viewer.