ARLES, FRANCE. L'ÉTÉ DES SERPENTS
SYMBIOCENE is the opening exhibition of l’Eté des Serpents, a non-profit contemporary art space rooted in feminist and ecological values. SYMBIOCENE brings together the work of ten women and non-binary artists around ideas of symbiosis, interconnectedness, and interdependence.
With works by:
Silvia Andrade, Iri Berkleid, Odonchimeg Davadoorj, Cheryl Derricotte, Kalie Granier, Elise Guillaume, Anne – Sophie Guillet, Summer Mei Ling Lee, Yelena Moskovitch, Hannah Rowan & Clémence Vazard.
Curated by Marie de Ganay
The title SYMBIOCENE refers to a term coined by environmental philosopher Glenn Albrecht. In his essay Exiting the Anthropocene and entering the Symbiocene, Albrecht argues that the next era of human history should be named the Symbiocene, from the word symbiosis, to subvert the human-centered perspective that dominates and exploits all forms of lives. In her book Staying with the Trouble, Making Kin in the Chthulucene, philosopher Donna J. Haraway also offers new ways to think about our relations with the Earth and its inhabitants. She proposes a moment to learn to stay with the trouble of living and dying in response-ability on a damaged earth. 1
Drawing from these different theories, the multidisciplinary exhibition SYMBIOCENE will interrogate how we can be truly present to respond to the current social and ecological emergency? How can we reflect on our connection to others, humans, and more than humans? What if we could celebrate the interconnectedness and interdependence of all life forms as the source of mutual flourishing? SYMBIOCENE dwells on how to think about our trajectories as woven with one another to imagine possibilities to build more liveable and harmonious futures.
ARTISTS Short Biographies
Silvia Andrade is a Mexican artist living and working in Berlin. She received her BFA at the National University of Mexico City, in 2018 she completed an MFA degree at IKKG, Koblenz University of Applied Sciences. In her work, Silvia questions the concepts of place, space, and territory. She uses clay, minerals, stones, and audio as materials. She is interested in the alchemical process of ceramics.
Iri Berkleid is an artist based in Paris. Berkleid uses biology, living bodies, and experimental vitalism in her pursuit of psychic imprints on matter. In her sculptures and installations, the diverse shapes of her work mimic the relational plasticity of our living world, the living tissue that binds us all in this mysterious, microscopic and impermanent cellular dance that is life.
Ondonchimeg Davadoorj left Mongolia at the age of 17 for the Czech Republic, before moving to Paris in 2009, where she began studying art. A graduate of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Art Paris-Cergy (ENSAPC), she has presented her work in group exhibitions (Salon de Montrouge, 63rd edition, 2018; Galerie Premier Regard, Paris, 2018 “Matters of Concern”, Hermès La Verrière, Brussels, 2019; “Even the rocks reach out to kiss you”, Transpalette, Bourges, 2021; “Animal Kingdom”, me Nue, Hamburg, 2021, “Danse et Rituel”, Centre National de la Danse, Pantin, 2021) and has had solo shows, notably at Backslash Gallery (2019 and 2021). She is represented by Backslash Gallery (Paris) and Re.Riddle Gallery (San Francisco).
Cheryl Derricotte is a visual artist and her favorite mediums are glass and paper. Originally from Washington, DC, she lives and makes art in San Francisco, CA. Her art has been featured in the New York Times, The Guardian, The San Francisco Chronicle, MerciSF and the San Francisco Business Times. Derricotte was awarded the commission to develop a monument to Harriet Tubman at the transit-oriented development Gateway at Millbrae Station, believed to be the first sculptural tribute to the American abolitionist made in glass.
Kalie Granier is a French interdisciplinary artist based in California. Her artistic practice explores life below the surface and the interdependence between humans and non-humans. Her research lies at the intersection of art, science, and activism, with a focus on marine plants and relies on a close dialogue between scientists and environmentalists. She is the co-founder of Loud Spring, an Ecofeminist Art Tank based in San Francisco.
Elise Guillaume (1996) is a Belgian artist and filmmaker whose work explores our complex relationship with nature. Interested in the connections within our (eco)systems, she uses audio-visual mediums to create contrasting narratives to question what it means to be human in a time of crisis and extinction. The body is a key element in her work: it becomes a vessel for interpreting living beings that form our natural world. With this in mind, the body becomes a meeting point between viewer and subject matter to encourage discourse regarding multi-species kinship.
Anne-Sophie Guillet was born in Oxford, UK. She has a master’s degree in visual arts and photography from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of Brussels in 2013. Her work has been shown in Belgium and internationally, notably at Contretype (BE), Salon de Montrouge (FR), Wiels (BE), MOPLA (US), Portrait Hellerau Photography Award (DE). Her series address subjects such as identity and the questioning of social injunctions. Currently, Anne-Sophie Guillet is developing her ongoing series “Together” about relationships and loves that break out of the heteronormative romantic love box.
Summer Mei Ling Lee is a multi-disciplinary artist based in San Francisco and Chicago, who has worked artistically throughout the US and in Hong Kong, China, and Europe, Lee focuses on projects inspired by site and situation, creating process-based works in a wide range of sculptural and video media, as well as activism and performance, embracing listening and collaboration. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Berkeley Art Museum (BAMPF) and the He Xiangning Museum in Shenzhen, China.
Yelena Moskovich is a writer and artist born in Ukraine (USSR) and emigrated to the USA with her family as Jewish refugees in 1991. They are the author of three novels, A Door Behind A Door, Virtuoso, long-listed for the Dylan Thomas Prize, and The
Natashas. They have written for Vogue, Frieze, Paris Review, Times Literary Supplement, and their fiction and art have appeared in Purple Diary, Apartamento, Skirt Chronicles, Agenda, and most recently in Kuba Ryniewicz’s photography book, The Daily Wedding. They’ve also served as a curator and exhibiting artist for the 2018 Los Angeles Queer Biennial.
Hannah Rowan is a multidisciplinary artist based in London. Her work reflects on what it means to be intimately connected as Bodies of Water, layering a post-human feminist perspective on material science, embodiment, and ecological collapse to challenge Anthropocentrism. She uses a range of media including sculpture, installation, performance, sound, and video to explore the uncertain form of materials.
Clémence Vazard is a Paris-based artist whose interdisciplinary artistic practice explores gendered violence and questions the normative representations of femininity. From performance to video, through photography, collage, and sound, Clémence Vazard appropriates each visual language to transform intimate narratives into visual manifestos.