Emilija Škarnulytė conceived this installation for Tate Modern’s South Tank to mark COP26 (the 26th United Nations Climate Change conference, taking place this year in Glasgow). Set 10,000 years in the future, looking into the past (our present), the artist dives into deep time, from the cosmic and geological, to the ecological and political.
The artist based the work on mapping technologies, such as sonar, remote sensing and seafloor scanning, and set out to explore structures in the depths of the sea. These include Baia, an ancient Roman city now under water due to seismic activity in the Mediterranean and the Gulf of Mexico, where laboratory-bred corals are used to restore the ecosystems damaged in consecutive oil spills, among other sites.
Dressed as a mermaid, the artist freedives in an attempt to measure space and time, using her own body as a scale. Reflecting upon Škarnulytė’s work, the poet Quinn Latimer encourages us to ‘hold our breath. Drop. Dive. Open our eyes. Leave our body at the surface. We are now all eye, like a drill; all tail, like a fish.’
Read a critical reflection on the artists work by Quinn Latimer.
Additional short films by Emilija Škarnulytė are screened throughout the weekend in the Starr Cinema. Screenings start at 11.00, 14.00 and 16.00 on Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 October. Free tickets are available to collect from Level 0 ticket desk on a first come, first served basis.
Organised by Hyundai Tate Research Centre: Transnational in partnership with Hyundai Motor.