Thomas Feuerstein, ‘NYMPHAE (Manna Sculpture)’, 2016, Galerie Elisabeth & Klaus Thoman

Thomas Feuerstein's artworks function rather like laboratory experiments that take up the threads of reality and weave the viewer into a tapestry of narratives. In the series Manna-Sculptures, Feuerstein relates the story of an artist who produces his own food and painting materials, cultivating a form of manna that serves as pigment for his paintings and as a source of food and energy, whilst freeing the atmosphere of carbon dioxide and purifying wastewater at the same time.

NYMPHAE operates along the lines of bio-reactors, in which Chlorella algae are growing and circulating. Depending on the specific space or site, the Manna-Sculpture functions with sunlight or artificial light and produce a nutrient solution pumped through a system of pipes, comparable to the way the leaves of a tree increase its surface area and so optimize the potential for photosynthesis.

Feuerstein's NYMPHAE functions primarily as a hybrid of futuristic houseplant and lamp object, absorbing strands of reality (food, energy, climate) in order to concentrate them artistically and socially. The real and the symbolic, the biological and the political, form a conceptual knot that provokes confabulations and fictional narratives that in turn spin their semantic webs.

About Thomas Feuerstein