Projects

Invocation For Hope

COMMISSIONER
MUSEUM FOR APPLIED ARTS, VIENNA
EXHIBITED
MUSEUM FOR APPLIED ARTS, VIENNA 28.05 to 3.10.21
FUNDING SUPPORT
CREATURES, EUROPEAN UNION HORIZON 2020

Invocation for Hope, MAK, Vienna, 2021. Image courtesy of Stephan Lux.

 

Exhibition Text

The forest appears quiet. Waiting for us to listen.

Wander up the ramp. Tread carefully along the path, meander past the skeletal remains of black pine. Row after row, arranged in a perfect, orderly grid, their blackened bodies remain stubbornly standing in the damaged soil. Pause a moment. Examine the dark, uneven surfaces of the decomposing bark that still holds onto its slender host. A stark reminder of that luminous flame that swept their bare skins, extinguishing their dreams of canopying under the white sun.

Millennia of  communal bonds broken by human greed in just a few hundred years. Whole ecologies disturbed by capitalism and war destroying life sustaining worlds-taking human and non-human alike.

If you lend your ear to  the grid, you might hear the echoes of that calamitous terraforming in the hollow landscape.

The traces of this destruction persist in the grey rocks littered across the land. How do we move forward in this shattered landscape?

Hold onto this predicament and continue the journey  to the  end, and you may hear whispers of a sprightly frond, unfurling in the mythic shadows of bumt black pine. The enticing poem of a resurgent forest rising from the skeletal remains, gracefully returning fertility to the earth.

In the heart of the dead forest, a glimpse of an interdependent, tentacular flourishing, a glimpse of hope. Come along, with abandon, and embrace this spirited renewal in, and amongst, damaged ruins.

Dance with wild grasses amid adolescent trees. A spell binding dawn chorus calling out across the midsummer morning. If you gaze into the glistening pool, what awaits? A hope for a renewal of our bonds.

A hope for new, collaborative world-making. Worlds where humans and non-humans carve and shape their destinies together.

An ecology of refugee species in reflection, taking strength in each other. Taking courage in the mere fact that they are not alone, that as long as there is life there is hope. Is this you? Are you them?

Welcome to our Forest.

 

Images

 

Photoshoot by Stephan Lux.

 

Image courtesy of Superflux.

 

Photoshoot by Lorenz Seidler.

 

 

Film

 

Exhibition

Invocation for Hope was an immersive installation in the central hall of the Museum of Applied Arts (MAK), Vienna from 28 May to 3 October 2021 for the Vienna Biennale 2021

 

Press

Die Klimafrage als Erlebnis – Gerald Heidegger and Florian Baranyi for ORF

“one of the most impressive installations of recent times”

 

Superflux creates forest of over 400 fire-blackened pine trees at Vienna Biennale – India Block for Dezeen

“The living oasis is a symbol of hope to encourage people to think about new ways to live with the natural world after climate change.”

 

Superflux creates a resurgent forest as the centrepiece of BiennaleArchhello

“Instead of setting out to scare viewers, they offer a vision of life flourishing amid ruin, a portrait of the possibility of global rebirth.”

 

This haunting forest offers hope in the face of climate change – Mark Wilson for Fast Company

“As you walk into the room, you realize it’s no normal room. It’s a living forest, transported into the frame of four white walls.”

 

Invocation for Hope, Superflux: Vienna Biennale Damn Magazine

“[…] the installation leads viewers one by one on a personal journey from the ravages of climate crisis to the possibility of renewal and a deeper connection with nature.”

 

 

Credits

Commissioner
Museum der Angewandten Kunst (Director of MAK Christoph Thun-Hohenstein)

Curator
Marlies Wirth (Curator, Digital Culture and MAK Design Collection)
Antje Prisker (Curatorial Assistance)

Idea and Conception
Anab Jain and Jon Ardern (Co-Founders, Superflux)

Superflux Development Team
Jon Ardern, Ed Lewis, Florian Semlitsch, Leanne Fischler, Anab Jain, Niccolo Fioritti, Nicola Ferrao, Matt Edgson

Soundscape
Cosmo Sheldrake

Motion Design
Dimitris Papadimitriou and Michele Vannoni

Technical Coordination
Philipp Krummel

Exhibition Management
Mario Kojetinsky (Head), Alena Volk

Graphic Design
Stelios Ypsilantis

Cooperation Partners
Anton Starkl, Gärtner Starkl GmbH
SANLight Research GmbH
Doka Österreich GmbH
Alpenzoo Innsbruck – Dr. rer. Nat. André Stadler, Director
Saubersdorf Fire Department – Thomas Krenn
Neunkirchen District Forest Range – Georg Heinz

Colour Consulting
SEFRA Farben & Tapetenvertrieb GMBH – Prof. Cristoph Wolfram

Exhibition Dates
28.5 – 3.10.2021

Funding
The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 870759. This is part of the CreaTures (Creative Practices for Transformational Futures) project, which brings together a consortium of artists and academics to examine the transformational potential of creative practices in moving the world towards socio-ecological sustainability.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870759. The content presented represents the views of the authors, and the European Commission has no liability in respect of the content.

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