Esparza: Autophotosynthetic plants

Digital Art and Science Network', carried out by the Gallery Kapelica in cooperation with international partners and co-funded by the Creative Europe program of European Union. The hosting was supported by the Mexican Agency for International Cooperation for Development and the Mexican embassy in Vienna.

GILBERTO ESPARZA: Autophotosynthetic plants
light installation // Vžigalica gallery // 16. 5.–18. 6.

OPENING: Monday, 16th May, at 21.30


The cohabitation of organic and electronic elements in an artistic installation enables the production of electric energy that sustains the life of this green biotope. This self-sufficient system of plants and microorganisms is capable of surviving human pollution and destruction of nature. The installation with its post-apocalyptic appearance entices the audiences to think about the possible dystopian scenarios where there is no more people on Earth.

The uniqueness of the project is in the establishing of a symbiosis between the bacteria, the plants and the electronics that balances the chemical and biologic processes which support their survival in a hostile environment. The artist, whose starting point are catastrophically polluted rivers that in industrial and overpopulated places serve only a place for waste discharge, has created a hybrid infrastructure where the fuel cells, made of waste-eating bacteria, light up the plants that grow in an isolated space. The polluted water drips through the series of microbe-powered fuel cells and finally purified exits them to water the isolated plants that live homeostatically among other microorganisms (protozoa, crustaceans, microalgae and other water plants). The project received the Golden Nika award at the Ars Electronica festival in 2015 in the field of hybrid arts. /Galerija Kapelica/ 


GILBERTO ESPARZA (1975) is a Mexican artist that includes electronic and robotic means in his works to explore the impact of the technology on everyday life, on social relations, on environmental and urban structures. The current focus of his artistic exploration, often in collaboration with research institutions, are alternative energy sources. His work includes consumer technologies, intended for recycling, and biotechnological experiments. He received  awards on the Life 09 and Life 13 Fundación Telefónica festival in Spain, and an honorary mention along with the Golden Nika award at the Ars Electronica festival.


coproduction: Galerija Kapelica/Kersnikova and Forum Ljubljana


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