Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Slow Landscape at ArcadeCardiff

Confronted by rapid changes in our society, driven by technology and global connectivity, how do we develop a symbiotic relation with nature? In her work Anne-Mie Melis uses a variety of artistic mediums and takes inspiration from evolutionary biology, science and our contemporary urban and natural environment. A 300 million year old fossil and 3D printed seedpods are among the specimens she uses in this project to nurture a speculative future nature.

Our time is the “anthropocene,” the age of human disturbance. The anthropocene is an era of mass extinction; we must not forget that. Yet the anthropocene is also an era of emergence. What has emerged? I use the term “contaminated diversity” to refer to cultural and biological ways of life that have developed in relation to the last few hundred years of widespread human disturbance. Contaminated diversity is collaborative adaptation to human-disturbed ecosystems. It emerges as the detritus of environmental destruction, imperial conquest, profit making, racism, and authoritarian rule—as well as creative becoming. It is not always pretty. But it is who we are and what we have as available working partners for a liveable earth. “Slow disturbance” refers to anthropogenic ecosystems in which many other species can live. Slow disturbance landscapes are those that nurture interspecies collaborations. They are not untouched by the presence of humans, the ultimate weedy invader. Still, their biodiversity is comparatively high. I use the adjective “slow” in conversation with slow foods and slow cities; slowness is a dream to encourage, rather than a trait to objectify.” (Ref: Tsing, Anna. “Contaminated Diversity in ‘Slow Disturbance’: Potential Collaborators for a Liveable Earth,” In: “Why Do We Value Diversity? Biocultural Diversity in a Global Context,” edited by Gary Martin, Diana Mincyte, and Ursula Münster, RCC Perspectives 2012, no. 9, 95–97.)


Friday, 17 August 2018

Silent Stage, Kukiskes, Lithuania (9th – 13th August 2018)

For Silent Stage, three Nurturing units have been installed above the forest floor (wild strawberries, blueberries and a juvenile oak tree are some of the specimens covered and lighted up by the installation). 

"The units isolate small sections of the woodland floor creating 'an incongruous artificial environment'. Using methods of either covering or lighting with high intensity fluorescent lights the installations influence the growth of flora and fauna by simulating an alternative climate, reminiscent of the more extreme end of projections of climate change, where life is cast into an aphotic world of darkness or subjected to intense sunlight, which abates for only a few hours a day. Melis' work seeks to 'experiment with the idea of tending to a part of the wood by first sheltering it from direct sunlight and then providing it, at the discretion of the viewer, with artificial light for growth.' This active participation on the part of the viewer illustrates the notion that our environment is by no means immune to our actions and that our influence on the world around us, however slight or localised, has global ramifications that in turn threaten the niche within which human life exists" (Duke's Wood Project).

Silent Stage with Andrius Arutiunian,  Antanas Dombrovskij, Janina Lange, Fred Hubble, Paraic Mcgloughlin, Anne-Mie Melis, Sharon Murphy, Dalziel+Scullion and Jennifer Taylor

Silent Stage, interdisciplinary project, curated by Mona Casey and Tadas Stalyga
https://monacasey.com/index.php/portfolio/silent-stage/
Nurturing, prototype 3 (photo credit Mona Casey)







Sunday, 10 September 2017

Chicory 'flexine' _ http://www.chicoryflexine.wales



Roger Lougher and Anne-Mie Melis have been collaborating for the g39 UNIT(e) programme (2017, Cardiff). They have researched growing vegetables in the unnatural habitat of the gallery space and cultivated chicory in the darkness of one of the storage cupboards. This process was shared with the public through performance, talks, food and art events at g39. The artists are interested in how we live within our environment and the possibility of this being done in a sustainable way. What is the ecological impact of contemporary society on the natural environment and how is this framed philosophically and represented in art?
For the live events Lougher and Melis conspired with the chicory entity 'flexine' to encourage it to answer their queries and the curiosity of the public. In contrast to this, the artists invited Dr. Walter Dewitte, Senior Lecturer / Researcher in Plant Sciences at Cardiff University, who gave a talk about the similarity between plant growth and artist production and how our society is organised. Chicory prepared in a number of ways was consumed on the day.
A website was created and also a small publication with four recipe cards was produced as part of this project. The brochure in three languages (Welsh, English and Dutch) encourages open mindedness beyond borders and a responsibility towards our planet.


'The Encounters with Chicory' (talk, food and art events) happened on 14 July, 8 and 9 September 2017 at g39 in Cardiff.

References for the project research:
What Is It Like to Be a Bat?, Thomas Nagel. The Philosophical Review, Vol. 83, No. 4 (Oct., 1974)
Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, The Mushroom at the End of the World, On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins, 2015 by Princeton University Press
Annemieke M. Kiers, Endive, Chicory, and their wild relatives, A systematic and phylogenetic study of Cichorium (Asteraceae) (Jan., 2000)


Friday, 7 April 2017

Saturday, 1 April 2017

UNIT(e) at G39


with Rhiannon Lowe, Anne Mie-Melis & Roger Lougher, Jennifer Taylor, Neasa Terry, Megan Winstone, Paul Eastwood, Jon Ratigan, Emily Fryer, Philippa Brown, Clio Ryan, Johana Hartwig, Liam O Connor


Sunday, 14 August 2016

Regeneration (ANNFN)

Regeneration
Triptych, photograph, 118 cm x 77 cm, 118 cm x 84 cm, 118 cm x 77 cm


The triptych of photographs are enlarged scans of the cut of two logs of a felled pine tree. In the images you can see the leftover of a previous felling of the same tree so many years ago. You can even count the year rings to estimate the time it has taken for the tree to recover again. It visualises the regenerative aspect of nature which then again has been cut short by man.








Saturday, 13 August 2016

Prototype for a New Niche for Nature, module IV

Prototype for a New Niche for Nature, module IV 
Closed artificial pump system, perspex, tree trunk, plastic tubing, plastic container, coloured liquid, peristaltic pump

This artificial pumping system imagines and shows a very slow natural process which is similar to the way in which liquids in vascular plants move around, not unlike the holistic process of natural growth itself. The working principal of a peristaltic pump is the same as the physical system in which our food travels through our digestive system. The large areas of the plastic services reflect on the way algae are grown artificially (to provide a maximum surface for the photosynthesis process of the plant).

The surface the installation is standing upon is a manipulated image of the water plant Salvinia Molesta. This plant was originally cultivated for ponds but has escaped to the wild, it is dormant in the winter months in Britian. However, in warmer countries it is an invasive species clogging up rivers and ponds. If temperatures were to rise with climate change it could become an invasive species in the future in countries like the UK. 





























Friday, 12 August 2016

Prototype for A New Niche for Nature, module II, module III

Prototype for A New Niche for Nature, module II, module III
Cardboard, pins, 140 cm x 115 cm x 130 cm, 102 cm x 120 cm x 102 cm

The cardboard sculptures imagine artificial niches for new plant life to start growing upon. The possibilities of material from which functional structures could be made is still undecided. The work was inspired by artificial bio filters and also by the natural process of the breaking down of natural debris like twigs, tree branches and trunks which have fallen into the river and been taken by the water. These form small natural islands where new life can start growing again unless or until swept away again by the flow of the river. Natural debris in the river is itself a source for new organisms to grow upon, working as a cleansing filter for the water.

The small shape (A New Niche, module II) has an approximate surface area of 21.5 m2.
In the right circumstances on this surface area 214,691 seedling plants would be able to grow / germinate.
This area can also sustain a minimum of 0.344 x 1012 (trillion) yeast cells

or 1.653 x 1012 to 16.53 x 1012 bacterial cells.

Acknowledgment: Walter Dewitte for the calculations, Cardiff School of Bioscience 




with Jobina Tinnemans




























Thursday, 11 August 2016

Riparian Botany (ANNFN)

Riparian Botany
Sound piece, 8 min, Jobina Tinnemans and Anne-Mie Melis
The sound piece is dedicated to the dynamics of evolution and biodiversity. For ANNFN I wanted to add a sound element to my work to enhance the viewer’s experience. I invited Jobina Tinnemans to record sounds linked to the river and water and the surrounding nature. She visited me in my studio and recorded my voice speaking out the Latin names of extinct plant species in Wales (ref: A Vascular Plant Red Data List for Wales, Dr Trevor Dines, Plantlife Wales). Jobina then composed a sound piece to accompany my work and this is available to listen to on head phones during the exhibition. The sound piece was accompanied by the following drawing;

A Silence
Drawing on graph paper, 119 cm x 84 cm
This drawing is inspired by a painting by Albrecht Dürer, The Large Piece of Turf, 1503. This 500 year old artwork has been described by Richard Mabey as painting's discovery of ecology. Nature does not seem to have changed. You could come across a similar scene anywhere, urban or rural. My drawing visualises a plan for a future ecological system. The drawing also includes the names of extinct, rare and vulnerable plant species in Wales to accompany the sound piece.

detail of The Large Piece of Turf















See below images of details of my drawing:




Wednesday, 10 August 2016

A New Niche for Nature at Oriel Myrddin (6 August – 15 October 2016)


A New Niche for Nature was commissioned by Oriel Davies the flora project. The work I have made through the commission was presented as a solo exhibition at Oriel Myrddin Gallery. When starting my research I was intrigued by the river Towy; which has been like a source of life through the history of Carmarthenshire with Carmarthen being an important harbour in Medieval times. I was interested to look into the plant life close to the river, the riparian zone, and to explore wider ecological issues linked to it. These elements were the point of departure for these recent pieces. From an abstract point of view I explored the interface of land and water, which either originated over time by the formation of landmasses and the action of the water creating rivers (some would refer to this as “natural”) or was fairly recently manmade.



gallery view















Friday, 29 July 2016

A New Niche For Nature (Oriel Myrddin, Carmarthen, 6 August - 15 October)

Opening Friday 5 August at 6pm with a live sound performance by Jobina Tinnemans

Listen to an excerpt of the music here

A Study into New Plant Kinetics V (excerpt looped - moving image edit support by Damiaan Melis)















I


A New Niche for Nature was commissioned by Oriel Davies the flora project. The work I have made through the commission is presented as a solo exhibition at Oriel Myrddin Gallery. When starting my research I was intrigued by the river Towy; which has been like a source of life through the history of Carmarthenshire with Carmarthen being an important harbour in Medieval times. I was interested to look into the plant life close to the river, the riparian zone, and to explore wider ecological issues linked to it. These elements were the point of departure for my new work. From an abstract point of view I explored the interface of land and water, which either originated over time by the formation of landmasses and the action of the water creating rivers (some would refer to this as “natural”) or was fairly recently manmade.



ANNFN, module III (work in process, cardboard)

river Towy

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Jobina Tinnemans - Sound piece for a New Niche For Nature

I am very happy to be making new work for a solo project in Oriel Myrddin, Carmarthen, coinciding with a commission by Oriel Davies the flora project. You can find more info related to flora here. I have asked contemporary composer Jobina Tinnemans to compose a sound piece to accompany my work for the show A New Niche For Nature. She visited me in my studio to record my voice and also natural sounds and water sounds in the neighbourhood of my studio. Please follow this link for more info.

Jobina field recording sounds

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Watch My Garden Grow (Oriel Mwldan, Cardigan, 17 Oct - 5 Dec 2015)


Hypothetical Seedpod Fossil series (3D prints)



ANHYGYRH ADFER TIRWEDD - Inaccessible Restoration of Landscape    (see also post September 2014)

















Monday, 31 August 2015

Oriel Mwldan 17 October - 5 December 2015

I am delighted to present new and existing work at Oriel Mwldan in Cardigan. The exhibition will be opened on 17 October 2015 with a performance of contemporary composer Jobina Tinnemans.

jobinatinnemans.com

www.mwldan.co.uk

Computer Screenshot Images (2015)

Friday, 22 May 2015

flora (Oriel Davies Gallery, 23 May - 9 September 2015)

In a powerful and visually stunning exhibition, work by nine contemporary artists reveal how flowers can elicit cultural, historic, geographic, social and scientific ideas

Emma Bennett, Michael Boffey, Anya Gallaccio, Ori Gersht, Owen Griffiths, Anne-Mie Melis, Jacques Nimki, Yoshihiro Suda and Clare Twomey

flora is a National Touring Exhibition curated by Oriel Davies and supported by Arts Council Wales

flora.orieldavies.org




Monday, 27 April 2015

Drawing 2015 (Oriel Myrddin Gallery, 2 May - 20 June 2015)

The drawing Towards Full Bloom is part of the exhibition Drawing 2015 at Oriel Myrddin Gallery in Carmarthen together with work from Anna Barratt, David Begley, Helen Booth, Kelly Best, Julia Griffiths Jones, Robert McPartland, Anne-Mie Melis, Abigail Sidebotham, Stephanie Tuckwell.
Please follow the link for more info: http://orielmyrddingallery.co.uk/event/drawing-2015/


Towards Full Bloom, unframed drawing, 190 cm x 150 cm, materials: pencil, pastel and correction fluid / tape on Canson Montval paper 

Monday, 30 March 2015

Residency at PDR Cardiff (April - June 2015)

I received a Research and Development award from Arts Council Wales to research 3D scanning, 3D design and 3D printing technologies at PDR, International Centre for Design and Research at Cardiff Metropolitan University

http://www.designwalesforum.org/blog/item/id/anne-mie-melis





Saturday, 20 September 2014

flag trial (Les Montagnes Noir)

with Otto and Flavio 
trial date 27 08 2014