As one of its key elements, the carbon cycle assumes life as a metabolic ring of growth, reproduction, and degeneration – the conceptual foundation of prevailing biopolitics. aLifveForms consider these arrangements of life in relation to the technological procedures of maintenance and renewal.
Set in a mixed reality, aLifveForms’ cyclical cosmology suggests re-considering the self not merely as a biological body, but one also ornamented by technology and extending into our atmospheric environment. By re-subjecting the self to cycles of indefinable limits (beyond rationality and essentialism), it appears as an impossibly abstract body. aLifveForms spawn a being to embody the complexity of contemporary capital flows, global reproduction technology, and fantasies of climate control. This planetary being has different organs, a different reproduction cycle, and a psycho-reality which is different from our common reality. The installation thus opens both a physical reality with devices built by the artificial identities, and an ornamented reality, projecting Transformella cinis’ future.
Four cylindrical ceramics symbolically incubate the organs of new Transformella cinis’s impossible body. The plane of emergence unfolds through NailFont scriptures, logos and company names inscribed in the raw clay. Climeworks, metaphorically standing in for the lung, is a Swiss startup company and the world’s first commercial business specialized in filtering carbon dioxide from the ambient air, pressing it into stone and thereby terraforming planet earth. Mosa Meat, the muscle, grows in-vitro beef, a NeverLife that is nevertheless subject to decay and entropy. Ancestry determines an individual’s genetic origins through the extraction of data which endorses the stem cell as data material, breaking the cycle of reproduction. Lonité synthesizes diamonds from the carbon isolated from cremation ashes.
Text by Sarah Theurer.
Cinis’ organs serve simultaneously as containers for their AshOracles since within thermodynamics in the common reality, all processes in the universe move toward heat-death: a state of irreversible deterioration, devoid of potential. These laws trigger questions for aLifveForms’ artificial beings – How can cyclical reproduction introduce negentropy into worldmaking? Can it replenish the metabolism of a habitable world, reversing the carbon imaginary of extractivism while approaching life from its imminent catastrophic end?
JP Raether’s transdisciplinary performative work attends to a group of constructed and constantly evolving identities. These aLifveforms are composed of language, technological skins, digital devices, and Raether’s fleshly body, which they embrace and from whose identity they simultaneously continue to detach themselves more and more.
The SelfSisters, or AlterIdentities, are site-specific, colorful beings interwoven with everyday objects, whose works address the constitution of reality through language. AlterIdentities emerge within a web of performative appearances, social interventions, and elaborate vocabularies as humanoid beings and full-fledged authors of their own “work.” Currently, three active lines are “alive”, dedicated to topics such as reproductive and biotechnologies (Transformella), globalized tourism (Schwarmwesen) or occult substances of contemporary technology (Protektorama).
As part of aLifveForms, Transformellae are cared for by JP Raether and are one of three active lifelines. In their research on the capitalist lines of production and on biotechnical and socio-political reproductive technologies, they deal with artificial insemination, surrogacy in global reproductive industries or the assembly of the traditional nuclear family called IKEA. With their site-specific appearances they demonstrate that in every experienced reality there is the possibility of the existence of further realities. Thus, they work with the harvesting of human somatic cells, interventionist research journeys, and cyclical assemblies of their ReproTribe towards the realization of reprovulotion.