With an academic background in animated film and computer simulations, I work with video, graphic design and collaborative practices in order to build eclectic narratives. I’m interested in re-telling stories and capturing diverse viewpoints through interactive and non-linear strategies.
Topics related to natural sciences, technology and decentralised organising are specially close to my heart.
My work, which encompasses film screenings, participatory events, and solo & group art exhibitions, has been presented in over 40 different countries in 4 continents.
I collaborate with bacteria, computers and humans. I'm also a co-founder of Super Eclectic team.
The Cyano Automaton is a bioreactor equipped with Artificial Intelligence. It cultivates spirulina and gives voice to this species to narrate a story about exploitation, space exploration, and colonialism. Cyanobacteria stand behind toxic “blue-green algae” blooms, superfood sensation “spirulina”, and a potential source of nutrients for the first colonizers of Mars.
Aga Pokrywka, together with the Super Eclectic team, developed an interactive vessel that monitors the growing cyanobacteria’s condition. It is programmed to combine this information with data from NASA’s budgets, global gold mining, and the production of carbon dioxide. The Cyano Automaton communicates by tweeting out compelling insights that shed a light on how these statistics are related to exploitation and colonialism; whether here on Earth, or in outer space.
The website displays , in an intrepid style and with scientific accuracy, graphs and numbers of the reactor’s temperature, turbidity, and air pump. It also provides visualizations that compare NASA’s space exploration budget per year; annual gold mining in terms of tons and profit, as well as the production of CO2 linked to these activities. A livestream of the reactor, sleek blue prints of its design, and an extensive description of the project are also part of the digital platform. The website is linked to the Cyano Automaton’s official Twitter account.
The Cyano Automaton had its star debut during Uroboros 2021: Designing in Troubling Times. This annual festival of experimental design & research explores what and how we can design in current times of socio-ecological crises to support positive change. The participation in this event took place through a partnership with CreaTures, a multidisciplinary project co-organized by Aalto University.
Fermentation is a metabolic process in which microorganisms convert a carbohydrate, such as starch or sugar, into alcohol or acid.
Since time immemorial, fermentation has been used to preserve and enhance the taste of food in cultures all around the world.
Social Fermentation is a gentle and long-lasting transformation process inspired by microorganisms. Whether in science, gastronomy, or art, fermentation creates the right conditions for constant and continuous change.
Ferment Radio is a series of online Podcasts covering conversations with artists, chefs, activists, scientists and other practitioners of Social Fermentation. Each episode focuses on our macro and micro interdependencies, on restorative practices through fermentation, and other strategies. Ferment Radio is a platform to exchange ideas and perspectives. It provides tools and inspiration to develop social and bacterial fermentation.
A multimedia project that delves into recycling gold from electronic waste in order to reflect on the concept of value, the problematic around aging technology, and the human side of industrial recycling.
Golden Trash-Future Past was organized in a series of stages featuring: in-situ research, collective participatory activities, technical process, and an exhibition with the final results.
At Treasure Hill Artist Village (Taipei, Taiwan), together with Humberto Duque, I created an immersive, thought-provoking narrative to guide the spectator through different episodes of the project. It consisted the following elements:
Inspired by items found at souvenir shops, we printed postcards images from the process to collect e-waste, including capsules containing gold plated elements we mined.
We also introduced a jigsaw puzzle featuring circuit boards we collected, inviting visitors to actively interact
and put the pieces together (this artwork was motivated by puzzles in public libraries in Helsinki).
The exhibition included a fully functional, D-I-Y e-waste recycling kit to extract gold from a smart phone.
There were three large video projections showing the
chemical process to separate the gold,
the procedure to dismantle a mobile phone, and floating flakes with the gold we mined
The exhibition included also a large Nokia mobile phone piñata stuffed with imitation gold, and a traditional Chinese ingot filled with the actual amount of gold we obtained throughout the entire process. QR codes in the gallery space allowed visitors to scan and access additional multimedia material about each artwork.
Sustainability. Recycling. Vegan diet. These days, there is so much being talked about our limited resources on earth. The debate is followed by a trend on upcycling and/or recycling materials that we no longer use, and saving those which we actually don’t need . Body hacking. Self-awareness. Lifelogging. It is also a period in which humans, like never before, focus on themselves and their own ego.
Beyond our conceptions around food and waste, Reuse Yourself is a series of tutorials that instruct how we can recycle certain parts of our own body that are constantly growing, such as hair, skin and bacteria, in order to turn them into edibles or objects of daily use.
This is the documentation of a participatory-based processes that took part of Peer2Pickle, an exhibition revolving around food waste.
Since 2014, Ferment Lab facilitates participatory approaches and fosters social change for local communities. It aims to induce a gentle and long-lasting social change by taking inspiration from bacterial processes.
Ferment Lab has been conducted in various locations (Austria, Finland, France, Germany, Poland, Taiwan, USA), in different formats (workshops, discussions, presentations, expeditions, publications, happenings, experiments) and in collaboration with different co-creators and partners (Ars Electronica, Pixelache, Shadok, NRW-Forum Düsseldorf, Taipei Artist Village). The aim of each edition of Ferment Lab is self and group empowerment, which are triggered by open-sourcing artistic and scientific practices.
The flagship output of Ferment Lab's edition in Strasbourg is a 5-volume zine. These zines combine recipes for experimental fermentation with instructions for facilitating workshops. They are a manual for food preparation and social interactions. It also includes an interactive, multimedia exhibition related to our work and experiences in Strasbourg. The featured objects were equipped with buttons using ink conductive technology; by simply touching them, visitors could listen to audios containing curious and interesting stories about each item in a non-linear order.
As its name suggests, this is a speculative method of fortune-telling based on personal bacteria. For this solo exhibition at Treasure Hill Artist Village in Taipei, I collected bacteria from different participants in 22 Petri dishes, and incubated them in a nutritious agar surface. Each sample has its very own written fortune. The bacteria samples were interpreted according to tasseography, a divination method that reads the leaves left on the bottom of a tea cup.