In the muddy soil of rivers and lakes one can find micro-organisms that continuously excrete electrons in their metabolism. Teresa van Dongen explores these specific bacteria as a means to generate electricity for domestic use.
Electric Life is the latest translation in Dongen’s ongoing exploration for alternative and natural sources of energy and light. The light installation is entirely powered by micro-organisms that have electrons as a waste product. A future owner of this living light installation will have to feed and nurture it; a bit of tapwater with some additional nutrients and a teaspoon of vinegar a week will do. Van Dongen imagines that having to feed and thus take care of Electric Life, could result in a closer relationship between the light installation and its owner.
This new work will be presented at the Centre Pompidou for the exhibition “La Fabrique du Vivant” from the 20th of February through April 15th, 2019
Supported by the Keep an Eye grant, Creative Industries Fund and Fondation Carasso.
Special thanks to all the collaborators at the Center for Microbial Ecology and Technology (CMET – Ghent University), Jaap Hoogerdijk ((electrical) engineering) and the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO).
Photography by René Gerritsen