Agency Of Living Organisms (2016)

Agency of Living Organisms


October 21, 2016 – February 5, 2017
Tabakalera Center for Contemporary Art, San Sebastian


Curator: Pauline Doutreluingne
Participating artists / scientists: Lara Almarcegui, Iain Ball, El Conde de Torrefiel, New Mineral Collective (Emilija Skarnulyte & Tanya Busse), Tue Greenfort, Iratxe Jaio and Klaas van Gorkum, Anne Duk Hee Jordan, Esther Kokmeijer, Nader Koochaki, Maider López, Gerard Ortín, Tere Recarens, Koenraad Van den Driessche
Design and website:


Agency of Living Organisms is a collective art project, which explores the communication between different living organisms throughout the lithosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere.
It manifests itself as an artistic cosmography in intensive collaboration with artists exhibiting mainly new works specially designed for this project.
The invited ‘agents’ share a questioning attitude towards the environment and its constructed representations.
A new kind of ‘nature’ is being created, one that is shaped and categorized by humanity. Today the technosphere and the biosphere interact to form neo-natural phenomena.
As we find ourselves amidst pressing environmental and social crises, this project not only seeks to investigate our position in regards to our natural and built environment (the way we consume or sustain it), but also to lend insight into the perception of the self through the eyes of the ‘others’ and to forge an understanding of the complex networks within which we are embedded.

In response to the theme in question, the project proposes an exhibition with interconnected commissioned and existing works as a social living sculpture, an expanding format that opens the walls of the Tabakalera’s exhibition halls into the urban, natural and ‘online’ environment:


This virtual counterpart to the exhibition is an attempt to bring together visual, audio and text based research from participating artists and scientists in dialogue with the curator, that have all, in someway, reframed ecological thinking.


We have seen how contemporary thought shows how beings no longer coincide with their phenomena; Ecology, after all, is the thinking of beings on a number of different scales, none of which has priority over the other.

(Timothy Morton, Dark Ecology: For a Logic of Future Coexistence (New York: Columbia University Press, 2016), p. 22.)