METAMORPHIC LANDSCAPES (PAISAJES METAMÓRFICOS)

Co-authored with Ana Laura Cantera.

Paisajes metamórficos (Metamorphic Landscapes) is an artistic bio-installation which explores co-creation dynamics with non-human organisms, in particular with colonies of fungi. It is comprised of animal figures made out of MDF wood and LED lights. The animal figures represent constellations and are placed over a living substrate where the hyphae of the fungi commonly called oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus) thrive.

The animal figures (originated from the constellations Pegasus, Ursa Major, Draco, Vulpecula and the Deer, to which are added a chimera and a salamander) were produced by using wooden animal puzzles and LED lights. The animals are placed over the mycelium net of the fungi, which, as time passes, grows and covers the morphology of the characters, conditioning the functioning and appearance of the work. Figures of characters and mycelium intertwine, assuming new shapes and volumes, while the materiality and electrical functioning of the components degrades.

Metamorphic Landscapes inquires about art production methods which have as a horizon collaborative creation processes in which different kinds of organisms, (both biological and artificial), participate and sympoiesis. The notion of sympoiesis refers to the processes of collaborative creation in which the activity of heterogenous organisms are articulated, taking up Donna Haraways’s reflections on Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene (2016). In this way, Metamorphic Landscapes interprets the notion of sympoiesis through the development of an artistic installation as a hybrid landscape where the life cycle of fungi, the functioning of electronic components and the degradation of materials reciprocally influence each other, creating a new habitat.