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Dorotea Dolinšek in residence at the BioLab of the Ars Electronica Centre

The European Media Art Platform – EMAP, initiated by werkleitz and co-funded by  Creative Europe since 2018, is a consortium of 15 leading European media art organisations specialising in digital and media art, bio art and robotic art. EMAP members offer residency programmes for artists through an open call, building on the legacy of the European Media Artist Exchange (EMARE), which has been running since 1995. In an international open call that attracted 641 applications from 35 countries, the selectors were convinced by the project Biosymbiotic Exoskeleton by Ljubljana-based post-media artist Dorothea Dolinšek, who has been awarded a residency at the BioLab of the Ars Electronica Centre for the year 2023. Her project explores the exciting possibilities of interplanetary existence.

“This upcoming project marks the third installment within my ongoing investigation of extreme environments and the narratives they offer. The previous two projects delved into the ecological dynamics of outer space, focusing on the intricate relationships between biological entities. However, this particular endeavor shifts the focus inward, delving into the ecology of the human body itself. What caught my attention was the fact that other living organisms that inhabit a human body, such as bacteria, fungi and viruses, outnumber human cells by 10 to 1. It led me into contemplation, that the non-human other confronts the extraterrestrial within the intimacy of the human body – our microbiome. Even when we undergo extreme sterility and travel beyond Earth’s atmosphere, emancipate ourselves completely from the earthly environment, we are not really alone and isolated. Specifically, I draw inspiration from the space suit, which, in my opinion, represents the ultimate detachment of the human habitat from nature. It serves as a significant milestone in our quest for emancipation,” the author explains the inspiration and starting points for the Biosymbiotic Exoskeleton project.

You can read more about the project and its research and creative levels in an interview with the artist by Mario Schmidhumer for Ars Electronica.

Dorotea Dolinšek, who has created the installations TerraPort and Ex.A.R.U. under the auspices of conS ≡ Platform for Contemporary Investigative Art, is an interdisciplinary artist who graduated in painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice. She is currently working on her Master’s thesis at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana, majoring in Video and New Media. In 2021 she received the student prize at the International Computer Art Festival in Maribor.