• mutated vegetables

  • mutatoes, Uli Westphal, 2006

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SLS 3D print
28 x 23 x 25 cm
11 x 9.1 x 9.8 inches


AELBWARTS is the modern version of the tradtional still life with fruit. In the seventeenth century, strawberries stood for humbleness because they grow low at the ground. This futuristic example stands miles away from humbleness. Proud it reaches for the sky combining the elegance of the leafs with the heavy blob form of the strawberry. This sculpture questions the status of the organic in the 21th century. Fruit and plants are being manipulated to better meet our standards or just to experiment. At universities people are envestiganting full time on the strawberry. Thanks to the 3D printer we are even able to print our own designed food. It intrigues me as an artist that we can manipulate and personalize food as if it were our little personal artworks. I am fascinated by the future and the possibility that children might create their toys out of a mix of artificial, biological and robotic elements while their parents prepare their meal with yellow strawberries. I tried to capture a moment of flux. The movement doesn’t look purely organic though, the strawberry seems to mutate from the natural leaves to the artificial skeleton. These kind of skeletons I used before in sculptures as SNIBURTAD and ELBEETAD. Instead of being the internal support structure (endoskeleton), the skeleton is situated outside of the body tissue (exoskeleton). AELBWARTS combines three different textures. The strawberry refers to the blob architecture, introduced by the architect Greg Lynn in 1995. These blob forms, which look organic and mobile, are the result of a computer-based designing process. This architectural movement pleas for a removal of linear, rigid structures and aims at creating expanding, bulging and growing shapes. The strawberry seems to slowly collapse under his own weight. The roots that seems to come out of the fruit are inspired by whimsical structures of rocks manipulated by water and the sculptures of Henry Moore. The skeleton seems to hold the sculpture together en push the strawberry in it’s place. The leafs are a traditional element in classic sculpture and architecture. Most sculptures created with digital technologies seem to emphasize the artificial part of the sculpture. I’m more interested in this tension between the digital and the real. Even as a 3D print AELBWARTS is in the first place a sculpture. The form couldn’t be created without 3D printing but the painting process was completely done by hand.

2021   GNI-RI may2021, From knight to cyborg, Häme Castle - National Museum of Finland - Hämeenlinna, FI
2018   DLPA Advocaten, - Kortrijk, BE 2018
2017   Alpha & Omega, White Circle - Brussels, BE
2016   GNI-RI sep2016, Bogarden Kapel - Brugge, BE
Batibouw 2016, Brussels Expo - Brussel, BE
2015   De 9de Maand, - Tongeren, BE
2014   Green Light District, Budafabriek - Kortrijk, BE
Het wonderkabinet, Het Pand - Gent, BE
GNI-RI jun2014, Museum Dr. Guislain - Gent, BE
GNI-RI mar2014, NK Gallery - Antwerpen, BE
2013   Wit op de berg, Galerie wit - Wageningen, NL
(Re)source, 10th edition of 'Beelden op de berg', Arboretum Belmonte - Wageningen, NL