Working with collage, internet scavenged images and constructed symbolism these lightboxes show a myriad of forms present within the natural world. Bodies of animals, fauna and scientific photographs are entangled together to represent the different ways in which humans percieve, understand and order lifeforms.
This video shows the process of sculpting a 3D model of insect genitalia of ‘Ambunticoris sulawesicus’ which was discovered and documented in 2014.
Hi, I’m Joey Holder, welcome to my studio.
I want to be as transparent as possible during my process and working methods. I often don’t feel like work presented within gallery settings tells the ‘full story’, and much of what the work is about for me is the transformational processes it takes, not just the ‘finished’ result. I have always struggled with this and feel like the process of making and exploring is the work, so I want to use the different areas of the platform to journal and record these processes.
Please feel welcome to look around my studio, at the work I’ve posted up – there are images, videos and text. You are welcome to leave a comment or questions for me in the comments section.
Hope you enjoy your visit,
I started using an AI to create imagery which mashes together images by multiple authors to produce endless variations through infinite combinations. Creating hybrid visions of chimeras, phantasms and abstractions, the AI uses a biological labelling system for it’s creative process – you can ‘edit genes’ and crossbreed, as well as view the family tree of image histories and relationships. Computation strives for biological variety.
These images are difficult to identify and label, to me they look organic – like many different lifeforms mixed together. I am interested in organisms which sit outside our usual frames of reference, or that which are difficult to scientifically label. Much of life on earth hasn’t been discovered, let alone named, and I am interested in the limits of our human understanding through our technologies.
For this residency I would like to use several different viewpoints to categorise this imagery. I will do this in several ways – I will create a new pseudo-scienfic reference system, use multiple human subjects and an AI to describe them.
Installation: Digital prints, Lightboxes, fish tanks, silicon insect genitalia, earth, driftwood
The Greek word khthon is one of several for “earth”; it typically refers to that which is under the earth, rather than the living surface of the land.
Reproductive forces are present throughout the work. The imagery in both the prints and lightboxes are created using ‘Artbreeder’ an online AI which mashes together photographs by multiple users to produce endless variations through infinite combinations.
Creating hybrid visions of chimeras, phantasms and abstractions, the Artbreeder AI uses a biological labelling system for it’s creative process – you can ‘edit genes’ and crossbreed, as well as view the family tree of image histories and relationships. Computation strives for biological variety.
Contained within the tanks are silicone models based on the formations of insect genitalia. The models express the myriad of exquisite forms and mating practices found in the animal kingdom which are often invisible to the naked eye. We often imagine what life is like on other planets, other worlds, yet what is present right under our noses is stranger than we can imagine, far more ‘alien’.
‘Mana’ is the name given to a force or power which is said to permeate the entire universe in Austronesian language and culture. It is an intentional force and something which is cultivated and possessed.
The piece takes the form of an altar with embedded symbology: a combination of hexagrams, sacred geometry and references to the Major Arcana Tarot cards – The Tower and The Sun.
Throughout the video are a series of ‘sigils’ which are a type of symbol used in magick.
The video was made using text fragments from ‘The Book of Pleasure: Psychology of Ecstasy’ (1913) by Austin Osman Spare, who’s commonly regarded as the first “chaos magician”.
Using Spare’s words and methods, positive affirmations have been abstracted which are scattered throughout the film: “Life is a search for your truth, Sexual sorcery, Returns and unites, Free at any time, Revealed by all systems, Forget dependence, Somewhere unlearnt, What you wish to believe can be true.”
The symbols are layered over footage of sacred diagrams and twisting, squirming eels, snakes and nematodes that seem to be forming the shapes of the writhing symbols themselves.
The moon is layered over the composition, referencing the eight phases of the lunar cycle, that’s important for the timing of rituals and spells.