O Super (hu/wo-) man #3: Joey Holder, 'Illumina'

8 May 2016

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Green Ray

London, United Kingdom

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Joey Holder presents ‘Illumina’, an immersive ‘liquid environment. Using footage from remotely operated underwater vehicles, she simulates the collection of genetic data from creatures in the deep ocean.


DATA BANKS of bio-genetic, neural and mediation information about individuals are the true capital today, as the success of Facebook demonstrates at a very banal level.  Data Mining includes profiling practices that identify different types of characteristics and highlights them as special strategic targets for capital investments. (Braidotti, The Posthuman)

Joey Holder presents ‘Illumina’, an immersive ‘liquid environment’, based upon Craig Venter’s research in microorganisms’ DNA, on his ‘Global Ocean Sampling Expedition’. Using footage from remotely operated underwater vehicles, she simulates the collection of genetic data from creatures in the deep ocean.

As Alexander R. Galloway and Eugene Thacker claim, the human Genome Project and the notion of a genetic code helps to understand “life” at a molecular level:

“Biomolecules were quickly understood to be informed matters, containing either directly or indirectly the information needed for carrying out cellular processes. In molecular biology and genetics, such processes are commonly referred to as “biological control.”

Illumina borrows the name from a company devoted to the development of genetic data mining technologies, in order to improve research in health treatments and cures.

O Super (hu/wo-) man is an exploration through the sphere of non-things: things that are not necessarily embodied. “Things that can not be held in the hand” *, such as information and data, experiences, movement, language and disembodied things in general. Data is now exploited as any other material, it is addressed as an actual physical material and turned into a valuable entity, even as a currency. Data is overloading hardware while burning energy in remote datacentres, it generates wealth through untiring correlations and targeting potential buyers or criminals through algorithmic analytics, while bringing a ridiculous pace to our lives and a new understanding of what survival means. Machines are bodies and bodies are machines and this human-machinic interaction keeps increasing, in order to help us understand and to grasp the world we live in and to shape our perception of it. Therefore, so much tracking, processing and building of new realities, while boundaries get more and more blurred, begs the question: what is progress after all? This project is about embodiment, disembodiment, language, abstraction, delusion and progress and the absurd and paradoxical relationship between culture, nature and technology.

This journey would be developed in four episodes, where artists Eloïse Bonneviot, Joey Holder, Janina Lange and Marija Bozinovska Jones will bring their own views in relation to those subjects. Their propositions will run one after the other and will at times overlap with each other in the space.

#1: Eloïse Bonneviot: 29th of April and 16th of May (preview and performance)
Eloïse Bonneviot will present a performative installation based upon her project ‘Thinking like a Mountain’, where she gathered information about accidents happening on mountains and turned this into a videogame. This next level of the project will consist in a performative embodiment of the immaterial side of Thinking like a mountain, a physical enactment of the information.

#2: Marija Bozinovska Jones: 2nd of May (one night event)
Within the frame of Bonneviot’s installation, Marija Bozinovska Jones will offer new non-self-centered ways of quantification and enhancement with superfoods.

#3: Joey Holder: 8th of May (exhibition preview)
Joey Holder will present an immersive ‘liquid environment’ based upon expeditions to the oceans in order to unlock its secrets and contribute to human knowledge and development, while making visible a hidden side of the world which is of great importance.

#4: Janina Lange: 20th of May (preview and performance)
Janina will track the movement of some performers with a kinect infra red motion capture camera while screening them through two channels. This information will be stored and edited in situ in the aftermath of the performance, upload the sorted elements to stock platforms and put in circulation, creating new digital entities living by their own.

–Project curated by Gabriela Acha with the support and collaboration of Green Ray.

*Vilem Flusser


Gabriela Acha

Exhibiting artistsToggle

Joey Holder

Joey Holder


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