Web of Wet | accompanying events

date: 21/11/2019 (THURS) 18:00 – 20:00

6pm – Guided tour of Judit Szalipszki in the exhibition Web of Wet | Trafó Gallery (in Hungarian)

6:30pm Lecture by Louis Henderson | Trafóclub (in English)

Presentation of prokaryote precariat | Trafóclub (in English)

Louis Henderson: Plantation Capitalism

In the artist talk of Louis Henderson, we will primarily hear the story of Lago Enriquillo - a hyper-salinated lake towards the west of the Dominican Republic, on the border with Haiti - unfolding. The level of the lake, that was originally a marine embayment, flanked by hills on either side and open to the ocean to the east has recently started to rise again, flooding the surrounding land and in the process destroying villages, trees, farmland and consequently the lives and habitats of the local people, plants and animals. Some people said the rise in the lake’s water level was due to climate change and the warming of the global ocean. Others said it was for other reasons. Some recounted tales of government organised floods to release hidden oil under the lake’s bed, whilst others told of a corrupt local dam project that syphoned its excess water towards the channels that fed the lake. Henderson's talk recounts a poetic narrative around the history and the present of Lago Enriquillo and the Dominican Republic as the birthplace of plantation capitalism (and, therefore, global capitalism) and explores its relations and ecologies linked to our present ecological crisis. The talk, also referencing Donna Haraway and Édouard Glissant, takes a micro-level view on the onetime multi-species ecosystems the island was home to, and contemplates on the possible ways of how the remaining fragile and precarious constellation of beings could find new ways of existence in a perhaps post-anthropocenic future.

Louis Henderson is a filmmaker who experiments with different ways of working with people to address and question our current global condition defined by racial capitalism and ever-present histories of the European colonial project. Developing an archaeological method in cinema, his films explore the sonic space of images, listening to the echoes and spirals of the stratigraphic. Since 2017, Henderson has been working within the artist group The Living and the Dead Ensemble. Based between Haiti and France, they focus on theatre, song, slam, poetry and cinema. Henderson has shown his work at places such as; Rotterdam International Film Festival, The Netherlands; Doc Lisboa, Portugal; CPH:DOX, Copenhagen; New York Film Festival, NY; The Contour Biennial, Belgium; The Kiev Biennial, Ukraine; The Centre Pompidou, Paris; SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin; The Gene Siskel Film Center, IL; Gasworks, London; and Tate Britain, London.

Prokaryote precariat: 'Neptune in forced labor'

Prokaryote precariat explores Hungarian seafaring and marine memory as well as patterns of collective longing for the seas. In the frameworks of their presentation, the group will introduce their work to date, including their exhibition in Fiume / Rijeka at SKC Gallery, their work Corpus Separatum developed for the exhibition Web of Wet, in which the cultural, the political and the mnemohistory of the Hungarian sea folds into the intangible connecting medium of human and nonhuman entanglements, the world seas. An immersion of a duration of a breath into scientific and artistic fantasies of sealessness; into facts, myths and conjunctions. The prokaryote precariat group - Szilvi Német, Kitti Gosztola and Olivér Horváth - have been working together for three years, their group name was inspired by István Apáthy's essay on zoological stations. The focal point of the research of the group are marine research stations as interfaces where scientific discourses and the realm of fantasy blends together, from animal to human, from unicellular to the scale of the galactic.

The prokaryote precariat group strives to explore how the landscape imaginaries of the Hungarian-Adriatic relations were constructed as well as their role in the collective national imagination by combining different sources. The research is summarized, among other formats in a zine and in a wall drawing displayed on the exhibition Web of Wet - with the help of these bits of texts compiled from diverse sources, the symbolic role Fiume and the Hungarian port played for geographers and marine biologists working on the nationalization of the seaside unfolds.

The exhibition Web of wet is on view until 5th January 2020 at Trafó Gallery.

more information on the exhibition

Supported by: National Cultural Fund of Hungary, Embassy of Hungary in the Hague, Zsolt Honfi, Káli Kövek

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