BIOLOGY OF LOVE

Part of group exhibition “Fieldworks”

Institute of Environmental Solution

Curator Aleksejs Beļeckis

2021

Do you remember the place that is full of butterflies? When it tickles and scares at the same time because the power that permeates is so enjoyable and at the same time so much more powerful than this unique intimacy or you as an individual. In the ancient world and the Middle Ages, love was by no means primarily related to feelings, but to the power that draws a stone to the earth and plants to the sun.

This work explores the interrelationships between internal and external environmental processes. What germinates in one grows and metamorphoses in the other. In fact, there has never been a real separation between these habitats, as well as between body and mind. Therefore, the butterflies in the room are not only insects but also our inner feeling of butterflies in the stomach, which are inhabitants of our emotional landscapes.

The Small tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae) from the butterfly family Nymphalidae lays its eggs on the nettles (Urtica dioica), hence their name. Nettle with its sting protects the larvae that feed on it until ready to cocoon and transform into butterflies. The process of metamorphosis is not always easy or successful.

The performance costume was created in collaboration with artist Sandra Kosorotova. It is made of non-violent silk, dyed with nettle, and stained with rust. The belt, which is made from foraged and processed nettle fibers as well as foraged plastic bags, is the handiwork of all the women involved in this project.

The soundscape by Maksims Šenteļevs was made using processed butterfly wing recordings by a granular synthesizer, sounds of abandoned locations, and other intuitive environmental sounds. 

Scientist Kristīne Berķis Lubinska, Head of the Entomology Department at the Institute of Environmental Solutions

Performance participants: Sarmīte Meja Kalniņa, Daniella, Anastasija and Lūna Shneps-Shneppe

Exhibition architect Līva Kreislere

Producer Alīse Vorobeja

Photos: Kristīne Madjare, Aeksejs Beļeckis