BLOOMING LOVE | NASTIEN & TROPISMEN

Oct 7 – Nov 5 2022, HAUNT, Berlin

BLOOMING LOVE | NASTIEN & TROPISMEN

Daniel Hengst

 

7 Oct - 5 Nov 2022

BLOOMING LOVE | NASTIEN & TROPISMEN
Daniel Hengst

Vernissage
Friday 7 October 4 – 9 pm

Duration

7 Oct – 5 Nov 2022

Opening hours
Wed – Sat  2 – 6 pm
and by appointment at rsvp@frontviews.de
we recommend to wear a mask.

Nastien & Tropismen is funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media. The presentation of Blooming Love is supported by the European Media Art Platform (EMAP) co-funded by the European Union.
 


Programme

Vernissage
Fri 7 Oct 4 – 9 pm

Midissage
Do 20 Oct 2 – 10 pm
and Panel Talk
Do 20 Oct 8 – 10 pm
Discussion with Susanne Abel (project coordinator MoKli - Moor and Climate Protection at the Michael Succow Foundation and research assistant at the University of Greifswald), Dr. Judith Elisabeth Weiss (art historian, ethnologist) and Daniel Hengst

Finissage
Sat 5 Nov 4 – 9 pm

Please reserve your attendance at
rsvp@frontviews.de



Daniel Hengst’s solo exhibition at Frontviews HAUNT displays two multimedia installations building on a common narrative. Within the framework of the European residency programme EMAP/EMARE, Hengst developed, in 2021, the VR work Blooming Love. The work focuses on 30 plant species from Latvian peatlands, which Hengst transferred into virtual reality during his residency. By moving through the virtual peatland, visitors explore the morphology of these special organisms, as well as their own absence, as a speculative future of the relationship between humans and nature.

The plants interact with each other in complex ways and are responsible for the formation of peat. Peatlands provide habitats for a large number of endangered species, have a significant influence on the regional climate, among other things, by stabilising the water level and the soil temperature. Thereby, they are highly effective CO2 reservoirs and bind 30% of the world’s carbon dioxide in a remarkably small area. The importance of these wetlands to the global ecology contrasts sharply with their use by companies that buy these areas, drain them or degrade them on a large scale: as unsustainable fuel or as a painful paradox in the form of potting soil for bee-friendly plant boxes.

Hengst creates a sensitive world of experience to counteract the human blindness for the significance of plants with empathy and attention. In these fragile systems, the absence of humans is necessary and demands a collective rethinking of human relations with the flora.

With the exhibition at Frontviews HAUNT, Blooming Love celebrates its due to the coronavirus long-awaited German premiere.

The media art installation Nastien & Tropismen explores the issue of human blindness towards plants and awareness of nature. In this virtual-installative greenhouse, no plants grow according to human doctrine, but new relationships with plants develop. Nastien & Tropismen poses the question of whether we are willing to empathise with non-human living forms and grant them an autonomous intrinsic value. Subtly stimulated by the installative elements in dialogue with the animations to be guided by the flora, visitors experience the artwork through their own movement in a performative manner. Thereby, Hengst reverses the human centered perception: plants usually move too slowly for our senses and therefore serve mostly as a background for human narratives. Plants have been instrumentalized right down to the core of the cells in order to fulfill our culinary, economic or even aesthetic demands. Hengst investigates this value system of benefit, letting people follow the movements of the plants, thus evoking inexperienced empathy through a highly aesthetic emotion.

A holistic real and virtual experience of the space characterizes both works, allowing visitors to immerse deeply in the narrative through daytime rhythmic light as well as interactive sound. The digital artworks reveal the significance of human absence in order to protect our environment. Hengst draws visibility of plant blindness and allows a clear view of the human flaw and the perfection of the flora.
 

related links

Daniel Hengst