In contrast to the fascination generated by digitally “manufactured” environments of the first part of the exhibition presented in Madrid, the second part reveals the reality of a nature full of scars caused by human overexploitation. Captivating, immersive installations of algorithmically generated landscapes, evocative volcanoes and imaginary geographies born of human-machine collaboration, give way to the overwhelming image of destruction of one of Europe’s largest and most polluting coal mines. Through colossal images captured by drone, Lemercier abandons fiction to confront us with the urgency of safeguarding our environment.
Three of the seven pieces of the exhibition are new creations: Edges, a large-scale hand-drawn landscape depicting Mount Fuji magnified by a layer of projected light; The Hambach Forest and the Technological Sublime, in which Lemercier shows the deforestation of one of Europe’s oldest forests; and Desirable Futures, a space for pondering and contemplation where the artist invites visitors to reflect on the present and imagine possible futures.
Among the other four exhibits, we shall find Eyjafjallajökull and Fuji, both part of the volcano series. The first one is inspired by the famous Icelandic volcano that wreaked havoc on air traffic in northern and western Europe during the spring of 2010, while the second one is composed of a large-scale hand-drawn landscape depicting Mount Fuji augmented by a layer of projected light. In addition, visitors shall also discover Montagne, cent quatorze mille polygones, a piece that represents a large valley surrounded by mountain peaks, a complex landscape made of a very simple grid mesh distorted by an algorithm; and finally, Paysages Possibles, an installation comprised of a plotter that acts as an extension of the artist’s hand, drawing a unique and personal universe of mountains.
Joanie Lemercier’s works have been exhibited at the China Museum of Digital Art in Beijing (China), Art Basel Miami (United States), Tokyo city View (Japan), The Roundhouse London (UK), Sonar festival (Spain), Barneys NYC (USA) and the Sundance Film Festival (United States), among other venues.