Bigert & Bergström

The Drought

Opening on 12 September 2013 from 6 pm
Exhibition from 12 September to 19 October 2013
Wednesday – Saturday from 3-7 pm

The Contexts team is pleased to present a selection of works by Bigert & Bergström taken from their travelling exhibition[i] The Drought.

more informations here : http://www.bigertbergstrom.com/the-drought

Bigert & Bergström

Since they started working together in 1986, this artist’s twosome, living and working in Stockholm (Sweden), has built up a body of works linked to science and the mastery of nature.

B&B compose their works using a special modus operandi hallmarked by dialogue. Dialogue between them, with the community of scientists and their research, and dialogue, lastly, with the public. The result of their investigations is presented in the form of films, images, machines, sculptures, performances, and installations.

What is invariably involved is a work on perception, focused on the creation of forms helping to broach a subject, manipulate it in the noble sense of the term, and invite the public to take part in this research.

Displacement plays a crucial role in this work. B&B locate subjects situated in different places around the world, responding to different time-frames. Through the introduction of a removed way of looking at things, and through effects of montage, they create associations, link opposing systems of logic, and usher in new experiments, and experiences. They act, becoming actors and constructors of this body of works, tirelessly looking for the place of a possible junction between man, nature and technology.

Reverse Osmosis Plant, Bigert & Bergström, 2013

The Drought, presented at CONTEXTS

This exhibition is part of a huge project undertaken by B&B since 1990[ii], which

deals with the issue of climate. The Drought follows in the wake of a first part, The Storm, shown at the Niklas Belenius gallery in Stockholm in 2012, where Tornado Diverter was shown, a machine made by B&B based on the plans of the Russian researcher Vladimir Pudov when he was working at the Institute of Experimental Meteorology in Obninsk and tested in southern Missouri in 2011 (cf. the film The Weather War, 2011, by Bigert & Bergström).

The Drought evokes climatic evolution, drought and water scarcity by way of two hypotheses: has an exponential trade in drinking water replaced the ancient salt trade? Does the resolution of the planet’s warming lead to a new Eldorado for investors?

The works presented at Contexts make reference to three research subjects:

– The representation of theories which propose to reduce global warming by the installation in space of mirror umbrellas meant to divert incoming solar rays.

– The site of Margherita di Savoia, in Apulia, in Italy, where the largest and oldest salt marches in Europe are located (under the Roman Empire, the city, then called Salinis, produced and exported salt throughout the Mediterranean basin and to the Orient).

– The site for turning saltwater into freshwater set up in 2009 near Barcelona as a reaction to the drinking water shortage experienced by the region the year before. Two hundred million litres of saltwater are treated here every day by an extremely energy-consuming process a perfect example of ‘quick-tech-fix’ engineering which consists in solving a societal problem by a technological solution (a simplistic analytical basis, a principle of technical conception, and a computer-assisted modelling).

November 19, after the exhibition at CONTEXTS, the Swedish Institute in Paris will be organizing a screening of the film The Weather War by Bigert & Bergström, followed by a discussion in the presence of the artists.


[i] The travelling exhibition The Drought is being presented from June 2013 to the end of 2014 :

– Eclettica Cultura dell’Arte, Barletta – www.intramoeniaextrart.it/watershed

– Contexts, Paris – www.contexts.fr

– CiS Art Lodgers, Barcelona – www.cisArtLodgers.com

– Gallery Niklas Belenius, Stockholm – www.niklasbelenius.com

– Barbara Thumm Gallery, Berlin – www.bthumm.de

[ii] « Biosphere III, » Galleri Riis, Oslo

Contexts • Victoire Dubruel • Mari Linnman • Pierre Marsaa

49 rue Ramponeau • 75020 Paris • www.contexts.fr • contact@contexts.fr • tél +33 9 54 01 37 32