Current Age

The (in)visible networks

A network of cables – like veins in a human body – entangle our entire planet. They transport a commodity of unparalleled importance to human civilization: electricity. Studio Plastique investigates this seemingly indispensable source of energy in Z33.

Without electricity, elements of communication, food preparation, festivities, production, traffic management, data storage, etc. would all take on very different forms. Electricity shapes our Western society as we know it today. It enables and feeds our current identities as (Western) human beings.

But also, electricity is a killer. It is involved directly or indirectly in many of the wicked problems in our current Anthropocene world. The generation of electricity is linked to climate change, it’s distribution systems through cables and storage in batteries to modern slavery and the exhaustion of rare earth materials, and it’s usage in household appliances and the industry to pollution and waste, …

Electricity is an addictive resource on which we collectively overdose, yet it is an immaterial commodity that we take for granted in our environment. Only when the power runs out, we realize the instant comforts it brings. Studio Plastique therefore wants to reshape our relationship with the electric current by critically questioning the current scenario’s and possibilities. What are the options for redesigning this system? Can we live more disconnected from the grid? Bringing back a focus on electricity might contribute to more curiosity and awareness, more discussion and a more responsible way of relating to this power supply.

Curator: Annelies Thoelen

In the context of:

ELEMENTS with Bonnefantenmuseum, Bureau Europa, CIAP/FLACC, De Domijnen, Espace Du Nord, Jan Van Eyck Academie, Marres, SCHUNK and Z33.

ELEMENTS is a collaboration between art and cultural institutions in Dutch Limburg, Belgian Limburg and Liège. During ELEMENTS we put the past and present, and the achievements of the Euregion in a conceptual frame. This gives the collaborating institutions the freedom to interpret and make a program around the elements of the Euregion.

01.05 to 01.08.21

Beware of electromagnetic radiation: people with medical equipment in and on their bodies should not enter the last exhibition space.

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