The journey so far...
In recent work, we proposed Altered Ways of Being and made New Organs of Creation from living cells to imagine other versions of humanness. We invited audiences to hear and feel other worlds. Audience reactions from the full house included: “It was an entrancing experience”, “I felt like I was having an out-of-body experience” and “I want this again ”.
Our early projects as Burton Nitta featured extreme visions of Algaculture to confront environmental change and consumption demands on global resources. The work created symbiotic relationships with algae and developed heightened food rituals in The Algae Opera. The pieces continue on a global tour with Algaculture currently exhibited at MAK Vienna and The Algae Opera recently tantalising the ‘sound-buds’ of VIP audiences at the Royal Academy.
We continue to shape our practice to transcend boundaries and disciplines. Concepts weave and converge within a theory we call the Transformosphere. We use this concept to reveal apparitions of other worlds, across borders of scale and time. The paths discovered unveil the edges beyond the known.
Paths divined from the Transformosphere have led to the Landscape Within where we have found global pasts, presents and futures inside the body. In response, we engineered bacteria with synthetic biologists at the University of Edinburgh to integrate into our gut flora and mine the body for useful nano-materials.
Besides Landscape Within, a series of projects were born from the Shadow Biosphere. The works led us on a journey across UK universities to extract the remanence of past people and their industry, in post-Anthropocene futures using Instruments of the Afterlife. These devices were made possible by forging new relationships with plants, bacteria and nano-size matter.
10 years on, the only constant in the world is change. In this state of turbulence, we reflect on a feature that underpins all of our projects - the power of adaptation.
In the next 10 years, we will continue to develop projects that discover and uncloak overlooked relationships with the wider world and our inner self. Works will challenge and create experiences on the edges of the known. Most importantly outcomes will connect with audiences and collaborators on a journey of curiosity.
We initiated Burton Nitta in a shared concern for human environmental impact. Together we aimed to investigate underlying realities of human nature, to tackle the motives behind damaging realities and consider alternatives for the future human-animal. We started our collaboration by speculating about the future and human evolution. A TEDx talk helped summarise these thoughts. The book based on this TEDx talk will be released soon.
At the ten year marker of working together, we are still fascinated by concepts of the future. However, these ideas have been sharpened to focus attention on adaptation and transformation. Elements that are intrinsically futures focused, but, for us, more embedded in action. As a result, works and research are reflective on the past, consider the present and embrace an ‘Afterist’ approach to consider ‘what’s next?’ Far from happy to accept what’s on the horizon, we aim for artworks to inspire and envision, to reveal and reframe; and ultimately to invite along all who wish to join us on a journey of discovery to imagine other realities.