Text by CLOT Magazine
Human impact on Earth’s geography by aggressive agricultural practice is not something new. We continuously see images of deforestation and loss of breathing green mass to the advantage of crops, cattle fields, dams, power plants, mining, and fracking… But what are the consequences of human action for the ecosystem, and how real are these landscapes we artificially create? A new documentary and exhibition invite us to witness an anthropocentric environment driven by exploitation and corporate interests.
STATE Studio in Berlin is presenting the documentary work by artist and filmmaker Lukas Marxt this week. The exhibition, which is part of STATE Studio’s ongoing exhibition series Field Experiments, brings about the Austrian artist’s work investigating the dissection between a world interfered with and designed by humans over the natural order.
In his immersive documentary video work Imperial Valley (cultivated run-off) and photographic installation, Marxt depict California’s most important region of industrial agriculture located in the Sonora Desert. Through a birds-eye view, we follow artificially laid water channels and fly over monocultures that seem to dissolve into abstract forms, portraying the profound fractures and changes inflicted on the land, depicted in the gallery as an impactful video installation plus a massive photograph in a 3×7 m lightbox.
On the day of the opening, 13th September, Lukas Marxt will also be presenting the book that came out about his work, From Light to Cold, alongside a panel discussion with Maike Mia Höhne (Filmmaker and Curator of the Berlinale Shorts), Olaf Stüber (art dealer, curator, publisher, and lecturer) and Laureline Simon Krichewsky (Coordinator, United Nations: Resilience Frontiers).