Anna Mikkola: ‘This Earth-Like Planet’
Join multimedia artist Anna Mikkola for a multi-sensory performance exploring the coexistence of synthetic and organic life forms.
Anna Mikkola's 'This Earth-Like Planet' (2019-ongoing) is a performative reading that explores the porosity of bodies and ideologies as well as the coexistence of synthetic and organic life forms.
With a simulation of the Earth in parallel reality set as the backdrop of the performance, Mikkola's reading weaves together multiple characters to reflect both on how futures are co-constructed in the present, and on the cycle of life and death. The text recounts the development of the first synthetic cell, gesturing towards assemblages of synthetic and biological life. Current and speculative science are brought into a dialogue to reflect on the role of sciences within a world under the pressures of environmental destruction
The performance includes an original music composition and sound design by Pekka Airaxin. The droning, undulating sonic environment is in an intimate conversation with Mikkola’s reading, which is set within an immersive video installation.
'This Earth-Like Planet'' was first performed at Rewire music festival in the Netherlands. It has since been shown, among others, at Somerset House Studios as part of their annual AGM program in 2020.
Anna Mikkola is a Finnish artist living between London, Berlin and Helsinki. Her practice explores, usually through moving image and audiovisual installations, how technologies shape subjectivities, people's relationships with the environment, collectivity, and future imaginaries. Her works often engage with porosity, for example, investigating how narratives and materials transform whilst travelling through networks, ecologies and infrastructures. Her recent projects have researched subjectivities and uncertainties within scientific practise particularly in the context of climate modelling and astrobotany. Anna’s work has been exhibited internationally, among others, at Somerset House, Institute of Contemporary Arts, SPACE, Jupiter Woods (all London), Sonic Acts (Amsterdam), Rewire festival (The Hague), HIAP (Helsinki), Trust (Berlin), L’Inconnue (NYC), INDEX (Stockholm) and FUTURA (Prague). She has given talks, to name a few, at ECAL (Lausanne) and the New Museum (NYC). Her work has been featured in publications such as Elephant magazine, Berlin Art Link, Kaleidoscope and Rhizome. Anna graduated with a MFA from Goldsmiths (London) in 2018 and has been a resident artist at Somerset House Studios since. Previously she co-founded the project space V4ULT in Berlin which was active between 2013 – 2015. Anna has been an Associate Lecturer at various universities and currently teaches at University of the Arts, London.
Pekka Airaxin is a design strategist, architect and musician whose practice interfaces with the physical and digital worlds and seeks to find new connections, tools and affects between them.
Before Anna Mikkola's performance, join us at 6:30PM for the final showcase of work from Gray Area's most recent cohort of the Open Metaverse Intensive. Through the 10-week online course focused on designing/rethinking virtual spaces, students have been creating original virtual reality (VR) immersive augmented reality (AR) 3D environments built from scratch.
Spanning virtual shrines, dynamic auditory landscapes, and reimagined compositions, this collection explores themes of cultural heritage, memory, empathy, and innovation, inviting audiences to engage with art in new dimensions and challenge the boundaries of conventional artistic expression.
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