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home  /  works  /  bacteria  /  parallel worlds

parallel worlds ...on the skin of a human,a fish and and a peach

2014 || sonja bäumel

self-initiate

Dunbar’s Number“ is an association that was founded in 2011 and exists of the studios Sonja Bäumel, mischer’traxler, KØJE (Konstantin Schmölzer & Judith Radlegger) and Martin Robitsch. Goal and drive of Dunbar’s Number is to strengthen interdisciplinary communication, to underline and promote inter-relations between the humanities and sciences, and to bring them together with their alter egos.

For the exhibition “SAGENHAFT“ Dunbar’s Number invited four Asian studios in order to develop together 16 new projects based on respectively one Austrian and one Asian saga. The saga, which conveys identity, is the anchor point for the interdisciplinary and intercultural presentation that builds a bridge between Europe and Asia. Read more here>>


The peach-colony
Tao Yuanming*

During the reign of Taiyuan of Chin, there was a fisherman from Wuling. One day, when wandering, he came upon a magical peach grove and discovered an unknown valley with houses and fields in its vicinity. The inhabitants told him that their ancestors had arrived there as refugees, to escape from the tyranny of Tsin Shih Huang, some six hundred years ago. Since then, they had never left and ended up being cut off from the surrounding world. After some days the fisherman decided to leave. The villagers begged him not to tell the outside world about their existence, but as soon as he returned to the known world he immediately spoke to people about his discovery. Since then, many tried to find the place again but they always ended lost and nobody has ever been able to find back to the small isolated world.

*Taiwanese legend, shortened version

Parallel worlds
Material:
three-dimensional agar-agar*, bacteria

Parallel worlds can be found, on the one hand, within the different kingdoms composing the natural system, and on the other hand at the level of every hidden dimension of life, particularly the one which is invisible to our eyes: the world of micro organisms. Existing on the planet we also inhabit they have been adapting to radical transformations in an incredibly successful way since billions of years. Accordingly to that they have been capable of evolving in relation to the novel needs. They are the symbol of a world in a state of constant mutation and continuous adaptation.
Drawing on microbiologists claims that 90 percent of cells that constitute our body are not human, but bacterial (Brown 2010) we can begin to envisage the human body as an ecosystem.


The exhibtion "Sagenhaft" was kindly supported by

bundeskanzleramt Oesterreich

vdw

* special thanks to Taiwanese BioArt Community which gave advise for this technique.