eco-Logix, Curated by Kunstraum's Fernando Schrupp & Nadja Verena Marcin, Opens at flat 1 in Vienna
June 10 – June 17, 2022
Curated by Fernando Schrupp Rivero & Nadja Verena Marcin
Opening Reception: Friday, June 10, 7-10 PM
flat 1, Radetzkystrasse 4, 1030 Wien
Artists: Mary Maggic, Nadja Marcin, Eliana Otta, and Joulia Strauss
Special Academic Projects: Amy Thorton and Ryan Beitz
Jointly organized by Kunstraum LLC in Brooklyn and flat1 in Vienna, eco-Logix focuses on the possibilities of eco-radical art practices to reveal the nature/society continuum. Our exhibition examines new modes of embodied art production in response to evolving controversies and reconciliations within pandemic and war. The practices presented in this exhibition reaffirm the importance of challenging ideologies of nature that lead to ecological collapse.
These six eco-Logix artists/researchers have come together in admiration for life and their immediate environments – built and lived; human and non-human; made of affections, imaginations, and struggles. Through nuanced embodied methods and poetic movements, they examine histories of human/non-human intervention on the planet and in our own bodies. Using the mediums of video, sculpture, photography, and drawing, this reflective course reveals absurdities, ambiguities, disparities, and, above all, hope.
The works explore a between-the-lines thinking, filled with amplifications, humor, poetry, and silence, which offer help to re-orient, de-colonize, re-late, and un-wind. Through inherent questioning from eco-Feminist, eco-Decolonial, and eco-Queer perspectives, the exhibition, eco-Logix, catapults strategies that contest the Anthropocene into action-oriented conscience. When viewed together, the works expose the interconnection and bridge the gap –we are nature, and society is simply another “environment.”
Mary Maggic’s (USA, b.1991) mandala projection and latex sculptural piece Milik Bersama Rekombinan (2019), or Recombinant Commons, reflects on the polluted landscape of River Code (“cho-deh”) in Yogyakarta, Indonesia—a more-than-real landscape colonized by plastic and the local citizens who live densely and intimately in its watery embrace. While water is the medium that connects us all, it is also the primary carrier of the industrial molecules, simultaneously queering both the river and its inhabitants’ bodies. Maggic asks, “Can the marginalized people of River Code care for the health of the river as if it were their own bodies?”
Premiering shortly before the #metoo movement coalesced, Nadja Verena Marcin’s (Germany, b.1982) video How to Undress in Front of Your Husband (2016) is an embodied critical commentary on our parents’ misogynistic environment. This one-to-one tongue-in-cheek re-staging of a 1942 short features Marcin in a double-role as Elaine and Trixie, revealing the do’s and do not’s of female disrobing as told through a male authoritarian-voice-over. As a glimpse into a time not so long ago, it reveals the shocking controlling nature of our present society to unghost its future.
Eliana Otta’s (Peru, b.1981) animationRefundación (2011) is made of tiger blankets, a popular everyday item across Latin America, assembled and folded into animist-stop-motion. In the video, two tigers emerge from the iconic mountain, Cerro San Cristobal, with its informal settlements overlooking the city of Lima, Peru, accompanied by popular hybrid music. As the tigers descend with playful claws to destroy the government palace, flowers grow from the debris, and Indigenous women—singing and dancing—rise to celebrate the beginning of a new cycle.
Joulia Strauss’s (Russia, b.1974) kin making, speculative fabulist, and situated feminist drawings of mythical multi-species beings are a critical component of the initiative #LegalRights4AkadimiaPlatonosJungle (2018). This initiative represents the jungle, from Athen’s neighborhood in Akadimia Platonos, as an ecological personhood. It asks the European Legislation to seek inspiration from human-animal symbiotic cosmologies, to transform the education system using Indigenous forms of knowledge, and for the separation between culture and nature to be overcome.
Alongside the artworks, the exhibition will feature multimedia installations of academic works by researchers Ryan Beitz and Amy Thorton. Where Thornton’s project seeks an embodied exploration of landscape, Beitz’s work instead questions the trajectory of capitalism through language.
Ryan Beitz (USA, b.1987) will present his ongoing World Speed Project, for which he seeks to obtain all available VHS copies of the hit 1994 action-adventure film Speed. To him, the total attainment of all available copies is an exercise in radical uselessness. In other words, to ask “why are you doing this?” is the Capitalist’s question, since it presumes that use-value determines the worth of all endeavors.
When we sense the world beyond human language and numerical systems, beyond the eye, beyond the limits of our human-made technologies that are always mirrors or extensions of our species, we make discoveries. In “The Built Environment: Species and Forces as Designers,” Amy Thornton (USA, b.1963) asks us to participate in her embodied journey of connection across all differences to arrive at a perspective largely disregarded by contemporary, technophilic, human cultures. From this practice, understandings between people also emerge, bridging the ever-widening gaps between our own species.
eco-Logix will be on view at flat 1 in Vienna from June 10 to June 17, 2022 from 3-7pm. An opening reception will be held on Friday, June 10, at 7 PM.
For further information or press inquiries, please contact Karin Maria Pfeifer at
0699 12010203 and Sula Zimmerberger at 0699 19411713.
Address: flat 1, Radetzkystrasse 4, 1030 Wien
Hrs: Fri - Wed 3-7pm
Contact: Karin Maria Pfeifer at 0699 12010203 and Sula Zimmerberger at 0699 19411713
Image credit: Eliana Otta, Refundación, 2011, video-still, courtesy of the artist
KUNSTRAUM's programs are supported, in part, by Art in General and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature.