Landskrona Foto Festival in partnership with East Wing / Doha
8 – 17 September 2017
The artist’s studio is an incubator of ideas. It’s the nucleus / ground zero where
creative processes develop into visual actualities. A sacred space for exploration,
it is also a haven for daydreaming, procrastination and failure. At times filled
with the irritation of uncertainty and frustration, the studio can equally be an
electric hive of activity where time and discovery culminate into a fully realized
work of art.
For artists Mandy Barker and Maija Tammi, the studio truly resembles a
laboratory, as both collaborate with scientists in the making of their work. Indepth
research plays an integral role in the development of their artistic ideas. In
their latest series, each investigates microscopic creatures real and imagined. In
Beyond Drifting: Imperfectly Known Animals, Mandy Barker envisions plastic
marine debris as plankton to illustrate the fact that plastic has infiltrated every
level of our food chain. Maija Tammi studies cells that have the potential to live
forever in her series, White Rabbit Fever, she contrasts these with the finite
mortality of flesh, exposing how beauty and disgust are ever present in our
Studioscape brings together Mandy and Maija’s two most recent projects in an
exhibition that explores the link between the artist studio and the gallery space.
The inclusion of a facsimile of their working spaces and methods equally
examines the role of curator as a translator and reveals the thinking that stands
behind their work.
Mandy continues her study on plastic pollution and its deadly infiltration into
our environment. Since the end of the Second World War, man has manufactured
enough plastic to completely coat the Earth in Clingfilm. There is no longer any
part of the globe that is free of plastic waste; the total amount of plastic produced
since 1950 is close to 5 billion tonnes and its very likely to reach 30 billion by the
end of the century.
For Beyond Drifting: Imperfectly Known Animals, Mandy travelled to Ireland and
Cork Harbour, shadowing in the footsteps of John Vaughn Thompson a marine
biologist from England who in the 1880’s studied plankton in this same spot.
Today the same species of plankton Thompson studied is now ingesting plastic,
proving that no part of our civilization is free of this insidious material.
Maija Tammi’s photographs, sculptures and installations converse with science
and aesthetics, disgust and fascination. In her practice she balances visual
metaphors for the process of death, decay and immortality against each other;
raising more complex issues surrounding definitions of each. She is obsessively
interested in the physical and abstract places where seeing approaches a limit.
To explore how disease assaults our conception of time, Maija studies (and
sometimes grows with the help of scientists) biologically immortal cancer cells
lines, which have the potential to divide eternally. White Rabbit Fever is an
archetype of a disease that she imposes to balance and re-interpret definitions of
life and death, exposing its fluidity. Tammi’s new ongoing project Volunteer 4
(hydra) pivots around the failed and successful attempts at keeping the
biologically immortal hydra alive and examining their regeneration.