My Digital Eco-Poem Installed in Bergen, Norway

“RestOration: Kalfarlien 18″ Installed in Bergen, Norway at “Ends of Electronic Literature” Media Arts Show August 5-28 2015

E-waste sculpture made of decommissioned university computer screens and peripherals.  Guests interact with it by lifting the iPad and seeing themselves reflected in the waste.

E-waste sculpture made of decommissioned university computer screens and peripherals. Guests interact with it by lifting the iPad and seeing themselves reflected in the waste.

What does an e-waste sculpture have to do with a 100 year old villa on Bergen’s Kalfarlien street on the slope of the mountain Fløien?

See our description on the “End(s) of Electronic Literature” Festival site.

Read the hypertext poem and view the documentation site here.

“RestOration: Kalfarlien 18″ is a digital art installation in four parts: an interactive e-waste sculpture, a soundscape, a tablet game and a hypertext poem. All are inspired by the villa Kalfarlien 18, where the four women artists met.

Guests enter the installation. Sound from Eva Pfitzenmaier’s haunting soundscape emanates from the library shelves and the LP turntable playing sounds of wind and rain. A web kiosk features the ecopoem “RestOration,” which features the poems of Alicia Cohen and the prose of Kathi Inman Berens. Kathi built the hypertext, which allows readers to navigate branching paths. An audio track of the poets reading is “Echo” to the “Narcissus” guests become as we see ourselves in the pool of e-waste. The sculpture makes visible what we throw away.

Hypertext is a branching platform of reader choice.  In this poem, readers can choose one of four paths from any given lexia.

Hypertext is a branching platform of reader choice. In this poem, readers can choose one of four paths from any given lexia.

We artists juxtapose the “remodel” culture of quickly “obsolescent” technology against the “repair” culture of the gently decayinig Kalfarlien 18. We in the global north throw away machines and literally “remodel” — buy the next iteration of the device. Those discarded devices and peripherals are dumped at gigantic e-waste sites in the global south, 80% of the time illegally. Children melt the precious metals from the machines and incinerate the west. Photographer and activist Valentine Bellini [http://bitrotproject.com] has called it a “toxic inferno.”

Anastasia Salter featured “RestOration: Kalfarlien 18″ in her “Ends of Electronic: A Report from ELO 2015” in The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Kalfarlien 18 villa design by Einar Oscar Schou, one of Bergen's eminent early 20th century architects.

Kalfarlien 18 villa design by Einar Oscar Schou, one of Bergen’s eminent early 20th century architects.

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