Performance ‘Electrify Everything’


08.04.2024: Kunsthalle Mulhouse, FR

This event is part of the exhibition Power Up, Technical Imaginaries, and Social Utopias, which refers to energy infrastructures from a feminist perspective. This collaborative project explores links between technical worlds, common goods, and connected representations.

18:00h. – Why Installing Women and Solar Panels is Not Enough
Lecture by Cara New Daggett (live translation)

Political scientist and lecturer at Virginia Tech University Cara New Daggett works on feminist political ecology. Cara New Daggett is the author of the book “Petromasculinity,” which examines how gender identities structure energy issues. Using an interdisciplinary approach, she examines the workings of the global energy system and, more specifically, what she describes as the ‘culture of oil.’ Through meticulous observation of the mechanisms involved, from the extraction of oil to its many uses, Cara New Daggett gradually reveals the relationship between fossil fuels and the patriarchal order.
Moderated by Géraldine Gourbe

20:30h. – Electrify Everything by Marjolijn Dijkman and Pom Bouvier-b

The live performance ‘Electrify Everything’ translates the seductive and captivating magic of demonstrations of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment into a critical exploration of the origins of the units and language used to measure electricity. The field of electricity has been developed, manipulated, and named for three centuries to control and apply it. 

‘Electrify Everything’ invites the audience to reflect on the structuring power of electricity and its relation to resources and exploitation. Pom Bouvier-b. and Marjolijn Dijkman use an experimental technique that brings the organicity back into a phenomenon that, by nature, through the displacement of elementary particles of matter, is dynamic and living. Together, they have developed experimental musical tools to play live with electric currents. They will create a sound composition using the electric charge of specific objects and devices as a medium, playing on the variations of magnetic fields. 

The visual contributions by Marjolijn Dijkman are produced with a high-voltage electro-photography technique in which the artist uses a discharge plate made of conductive glass with a tin coating, the same material used in touch screens. By making visible electrical interactions, electricity becomes an actor, adopting an almost animistic character. Besides these cinematographic images, Dijkman visually explores the language and visual identity of the terminology of electricity.

Jean Katambayi Mukendi wrote a text for the performance based on the language of electricity. The units of electricity create different chapters that explore the history and the current state of energy production in an associative and poetic interpretation of electric terminology. Trained as an electrician, his work is part of a search for solutions to social problems in Congolese society and the country’s depletion of its enormous energy resources. The recorded text is read and performed by François Makanga.

Time: start 18:00h.

La Kunsthalle Mulhouse Centre d’art contemporain
La Fonderie 16 rue de la Fonderie 68093
Mulhouse Cedex, France

More info