The photographs and videos were presented at Wozownia Art Gallery in Toruń as part of the “Vernal” exhibition. They give you this compelling feeling that – alike Alice in Wonderland – you have made it to the other side of the mirror. All of a sudden, you find yourself in a world where the clear-cut subject / object or nature / culture distinctions blend. According to Donna Haraway, separating nature and culture is an act of inherited violence and, if one wishes to discontinue it, “it is necessary to finally accept that there is no ‘return to nature’”. These photographs illustrate this very aspect: there is no returning to nature because the convolution of nature and culture cannot be undone. To describe this state of affairs, Haraway proposes her own term: natureculture, which emerges as a result of “implosions of the discursive realms of nature and culture”. Through staged photography, the project visualizes this implosion quite sensually, welcoming the audience to a slightly dreamlike, a bit drowsy world of natureculture, where each gesture acquires characteristics of some mysterious ritual.
A researcher of memory and commemoration, Aleida Assmann, quite correctly observes that one cannot recall something that is constantly present, for this, it can only be incorporated. This project photographically embodies all that is forever present around the artist. To paraphrase Witkacy, the pieces presented here came from the very guts of the artist and from the tissue of her life, yet in the final outcome, they are free of this intestinal quality, because – through their staged form, oneiric poetics and the hybrid sphere of natureculture – they move onto the plane of intersubjectivity.
[Adapted from Marta Smolińska, Natureculture and the Sleepy Spring Ceremonies, exhibition catalog]