Mariella Otto
24 January 2024 - 28 January 2024

Public work-sharing
Vernissage: 24 January, 14:00 to 18:00
Opening hours: 25 & 26 January, 13:00–16:00, 27 & 28 January, 12:00–16:00
Location: Black Room

Sharing session: 25 January, at 15:00
Location: VR/Sound Lab

Video installation, 2024. Location: Black Room

No copies of Soleil-Journal are known to have survived, pointing to a (hi)story without evidence and a production without residue. In 1882, Abel Pifre publicly demonstrated his solar driven printing press in Paris; a concave mirror -measuring well over 3 meters in diameter- was directed towards the sky, heating up a steam boiler which in turn powered a Marinoni printer. The broadsheet publication came into existence, using rays of light and evaporating water – this at a speed of roughly 500 copies/h.

The sculptural video component of Otto’s new installation «Soleil-Journal», uses this event as a model – appropriating an image of circulation, acceleration, disappearance, and profit. Extending from an artificial sun, the imagery also shows a newspaper printing facility, movable metal types and a gradual ‘closing in’ on a modern silicon wafer; an object used in electronic devices, such as computers and solar cells. Reflecting on notions of input/output, the scripted, excavation, digitisation, and concepts of power – the work turns the solar panel into a surface of projection.

In extension to the exhibition, Otto will give a talk, sharing her thoughts and research related to the project. Besides the story of Pifre’s edition and her general interest in printed matter – background includes Michel Serres’ “The natural contract” (1990), a philosophic elaboration on human responsibilities towards nature and Elfriede Jelinek’s dramatic essay “RHEIN gold” (2013), which deconstructs the famous Wagner opera, in a capitalist critique, rooted in the 2008 financial crisis.

Mariella Otto (born 1990, Sweden/lives and works in Malmö) takes an interest in the border between internal and external image production. Utilising an associative method of merging historic reference with fiction, her works often appropriate formats and ideas of a “Mise en Scène”; presenting installations of video, sound, sculptural elements and text. Reflections on technology, political movements, language, desire and the scripted or staged, reoccur through elaborations on specific events, characters, or documents. Otto received a BFA from Bergen Academy of Art and Design in Norway, 2016; and her MFA from Malmö Art Academy, in 2019. She has presented her work at Malmö Konsthall, Hangar Cia (Lisbon), Gothenburg International Biennial for Contemporary Art, Skissernas Museum (Lund), Bloc Projects (Sheffield), KICA (Krasnodar), Splab (Aarhus), but has also published and presented digitally in curated projects. In 2023 Otto received a two-year working grant from the Swedish Arts Grants Committee.

Visit Mariella Otto’s artistpage – mariellaotto.com

Mariella Otto