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Endosymbiotic Translations Proposing new Dialogues

the core of being human

or fish

bird or plant


the sky

makes another truth


you were never alone

three by three you are built over a surface that is tied in the middle

and the center is everywhere

- Elind Rui Blix, The Core, 2018

Image from solo exhibition, Tromsø

petri dishes, agar, cyanobacteria, parafilm, music composition, text

creator and directing: Elind Rui Blix


For 8 months, after a comprehensive security course, to gain access to the laboratory at the Arctic University of Norway's Arctic Marine Biology Department, I came under Anton Liaimer's coat and prepared 260 Petri dishes for painting production.

I autoclaved agar and grew cyanobacteria, transferred the cells to solidified agar surfaces, for to see the colonies slowly but surely emerge, beyond my drawings and wildest imagination.

Anton Liaimer is the first associate professor at the University of Tromsø, which I have collaborated with for my Master's Exhibition until 2020. This project was the first part of a major ongoing project, in which I try to establish methods to extract pigments from self-grown microorganisms and use the results in art production.

text presented in exhibition

The works were installed in a project room both in sculptural formations from the bacterial microscopic database I created and as paintings hanging on the wall, in uniform neutral sunlight, the bacterium's most important condition for life and photosynthesis. All the works were alive during the exhibition. The bacteria were dried afterwards for pigment and paint production.

1 of 180 cyanoworks presented

The performance production.

I engaged Marita Isobel Solberg to rehearse a piece of music created using the interface from a software. The software was tuned in to translate the four letters from en extract of the genome sequence of the bacteria. I translated them into Anton Liaimer's four favourite notes from the twelve-tone system.

With these notes as a starting point, Marita had a dialogue with my living bacteria at the opening of Endosymbiotic Translations Proposing new Dialogues exhibition.

You can follow this link and listen to a recording made in advance of the opening inside the premises of the exhibition two days before.

The recording was played on the loop the running days of the solo, so that the visitors sometimes could only hear a quiet singing voice and suddenly they found themselves listening to loud tones vibrating between the concrete walls.

Marita Isobel Solberg, Endosymbiotic Translations Proposing new Dialogues, 2018


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