In his art, Dirk Fleischmann uses business models as a strategy to explore economic forms. He inhabits these forms and participates in the same field as corporations do. He operates in the same way as a multinational corporation, while trying to create distinct meanings by maintaining his enterprises a little differently.
Dirk Fleischmann challenges given capitalist structures with his own artistic and personal means in a playful but critical way.
The intention of the installation is to create a representation of my myforestfarm for a museum context and to make myforestfarm accessible for an exhibition viewer. It comprises the main elements of myforestfarm project:
- Sculpture: 1838 Trees (myforestfarm)
Since 2008 we have been planting 1838 trees on myforestfarm. All trees are individually photographed and the image of each tree is geo-tagged with a GPS coordinate. Each tree and the photo that represents the tree can be located on google maps. This is a crucial element of the validation that the trees exist and automatically process carbon-dioxide
offsets through photosynthesis. For this visual validation method the physicality of myforestfarm was transformed into digital photo material. I was interested to analyze the meaning of this transformation by transforming the digital photos
again into a physical form. I decided to burn each digital tree photo on a separate CD-R. That means each CD-R represents a specific tree from myforestfarm. Thus the stack of CD-R could be seen as a representation of the forest as the accumulation of all trees.
The set up of the installation was inspired by traditional oriental landscape paintings on paper rolls (example)
Often you can find comments or critiques by the viewers of the painting as notes directly on the painting or even in the landscape. It was fascinating for me that the discourse about the art work became part of the materiality of the work. Sometimes this kind of discourse continued for decades and centuries. Different forms of representation of myforestfarm are juxtaposed in the installation: text and photographic images as well as speech and video images. On the wall hangs a text about myforestfarm by an art critic in Hangul, which was produced in the style of a photography. In front of that lies a 30 meter paper role with the photo archive from myforestfarm. In the two synchronized videos our consultant Gabby Mondragon walks through the farm and explains the various plantings. One was shot in 2008 and the other one in 2009. (watch: http://myforestfarm.com/images.html)
Dirk Fleischmann was comissioned by RSA, Arts & Ecology, London and the ZKM, Centre for Art and Media, Karlsruhe for an Arts & Ecology residency in the virtual world of Second Life (www.secondlife.com) on the ZKM island.
Internet activity such as using Second Life (SL) is consuming a siginificant amount of elecricity and thus is causing carbon dioxide emissions. Dirk Fleischmann has been a Second Life resident by means of his avatar Flex Dix for a few years now. The virtual residency on ZKM Island in SL took place at about the same time Dirk was busy with the planting of the forest trees.