Beauty and Wonder | Meristèma Lab
Meristèma Lab Italy
Piece included in Beauty and Wonder exhibition (curator Luis Acosta)
Materials silver, black patina, e-waste (usb cable wire), epoxy resin
Size ø 18.40 mm
Mid-sixteenth-century cabinet of wonders were repositories of all the objects that aroused wonder: extraordinary findings of the natural world were congregated between naturalia, otherwise objects were considered among artificialia. Rarities and mirabilia from past centuries, but what about our current Era?
We have entered Anthropocene, a new geologic epoch wherein humans are actively altering the Earth’s geology and ecosystems. New elements, specimens, rocks and minerals formed by the agglutination of a mix of molten plastic debris and natural sediments are coming into view as the first effects of this changing natural history. Could these new formations become our future fossils, as a record of our time here on planet Earth? Could they represent beautiful, wondrous and exotic objects exhibited in next millennium wunderkammern?
3020 project is a possible scenario that depicts a future 1000 years from now. It tries to imagine how e-waste, the physical debris of the immaterial digital era, interferes in geological processes. Inspired by three main lithogenetic processes - sedimentary, magmatic and metamorphic - I have created three different kinds of synthetic rocks, which include usb cable waste. These cables are made up of an alloy of copper and silver. Cut, oxidized, heated and granulated, the transformed wire is embedded in an epoxy resin casting. These new gems are setted on a silver sheet or grafted into a metal frame.
Graphical patterns, which are laser engraved on a silver sheet, represent an attempt to put together digital features and natural rock texture: a symbiosis of natural and post-digital fascination.
Parallel layers inspired by sedimentary rock are translated into a corrupted signal, a glitch noise pattern. Porous volcanic rock recalls a dotted pattern which refers to hole punched cards used in early computers to contain digital data. Deformation waves typical in metamorphic rocks become a wind of bits, a visual representation of digital dataflow filling cyberspace.