Undo opacity. What do we have here? It’s not the heart but the belly of the matter. Belly up. Belly out. Turn the problem inside out and expose it’s guts. To see the thing exposed – the belly of the beast… Crystalline gall. Artist duo Pakui Hardware help us edge towards a new choreography of care.
Pakui Hardware are concerned with the vulnerability of the horizon. Their work collapses the difference between human and non-human actors through installations of ‘hybrid ecologies’ that confuse any immediate impulse as to where loyalty or affinity might lie. Their compositions, amorphous, organic-industrial forms, examine the role that technology, economy and materiality have in shaping each other. Inspired by ‘case-studies of tensions’ including High Frequency Trading, automated futures and the idea of ‘Second Nature’ (biological futures, synthetic biology), Pakui Hardware takes cultures – and by extension culture – off the assembly line to check in – how is everybody feeling? The duo’s palliative approach softens the industrial hardware and along with it our own feedback response to their bill of health. Under the roof, things are looking a bit fragile. New alliances formed through a familiar vulnerability. Must care better.
Pakui Hardware present a new configuration that zones in on the ‘metabolic rift’ (Mckenzie Wark). This is the crisis point of irreversible ecological imbalance, the era of the Anthropocene in which we now live. Working through the metaphor of metabolism, the duo speak from the heart – or rather the belly of all, itself a grossly augmented system, engineered for maximum output, but fatally out of sync. Take it all in. Consumption, extraction. Consumption, extraction. Metabolic process amped to the max. Cables sluice inside wet, fresh extractions on support. A sacrificial victim of the gastric economy. The organism lays exposed. Glass, copper pipes, heat-treated PVC film, latex, saliva and chia seeds. Silicon guts. Interconnected parts lace through the space in an install hung from the rafters, sleek droop system. Eyes slip down rubber tubes and curl around glacier-rounds. Molecular red forms crystallize in thermodynamic moments that look like big boiled sweets. Some parts cinched round the middle like a gastric band… looks a little loose though. Someone should check on that. Stitches coming loose too on the part below, and that bit hanging like the Sword of Damocles above it all. So you breathe in a little as you pass by the formation, suck yourself up and shrink a little. Careful, or shards will be everywhere. Watch your step. Working out how to stay intact together by augmenting your flow. Something a little more symbiotic this time. It’s all in the balance.
Tamar Clarke-Brown. Commissioned for Baltic Triennial 13: Give Up the Ghost, May 11 – September 21, 2018.
Pakui Hardware are Neringa Černiauskaitė and Ugnius Gelguda. The artists are based between Vilnius and Berlin. Recent and current exhibitions include Tenderpixel, London; Musée d’Orsay, Paris; 13th Baltic Triennial, Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius; Muzeum Sztuki, Lodz; Bozar, Brussels and, Domaine Pommery, Reims.
Upcoming institutional exhibitions include Bunkier Sztuki, Kraków, MAXXI, the National Museum of 21st Century Arts, Rome; Bielefelder Kunstverein (solo), Bielefeld; Zeppelin Museum, Friedrichshafen, and Museum der bildenden Künste (solo), Leipzig.
Pakui Hardware have last exhibited in Vienna in 2016 at mumok, Museum of Modern Art Ludwig Foundation Vienna.