“The smaller we come to feel ourselves compared to the mountain, the nearer we come too participating in its greatness.” – Arne Næss, a Norwegian philosopher and creator of the “deep ecology” concept.
“Impossible Horizon” is a project by Ewa Doroszenko and Jacek Doroszenko, a Polish intermedia artist duo. The project consists of a series of photographs, unique photographic objects, a sound installation, and a video works. The works were created from 2018 to 2024, as part of artistic residencies at The Island Resignified Lefkada (Greece), Re_Act contemporary art laboratory Azores (Portugal), Klaipeda Culture Communication Center (Lithuania) and in and Warsaw, where the artists live and work. The works are only fragments of the Doroszenko duo’s wide-ranging and often long-term projects, which provide insight into the artists’ working model. The formally diverse works are not only gestures with conceptual origins but also technological experiments. The unifying theme of all works is the disruption of perceptions of the landscape and the artists’ questions about the shifting boundaries between the domains of nature and technology.
Fascinated by modern information tools and their immense potential for shaping lifestyles, Ewa and Jacek Doroszenko attempt to capture the atmosphere of the physical yet virtual present. Looking at the textures of landscapes – both natural and simulated – the artists highlight the role of photography in navigating the current world. Using Google Street View, popular computer games, travel guides and other online sources, the artists examine how contemporary digital culture modifies the perception of natural landscapes.
To better understand the causes of the current environmental crisis, the artists look at the history of the Western tradition of landscape painting, in which the concept of natural landscape was defined according to the dominant worldview – as a detached component, outside the subject. In their works, Ewa and Jacek Doroszenko aim to question the separation between the issue – the observer – and the separated environment. The artists focus on the purely biological conditions of human activity and activities determined by the modern environment dominated by technology. Ewa and Jacek Doroszenko direct attention primarily to the sound environment, the closest surrounding layer of reality, which is usually treated only as a background, a kind of supplement to what can be seen. The artists – residents of Warsaw, who regularly experience acoustic distortions and glitches – elements of urban „noise pollution” in their projects emphasize the need to popularize „soundscape ecology” – the science of acoustic relations between living organisms, human and otherwise, and their environment. The Doroszenko duo focuses on the auditory exploration of places and regions, discovering spaces with unique auditory features, and present works that subtly reveal the inseparable connection between man and his natural surroundings.
Imagine yourself on an island in the middle of the ocean
Full HD video H.264, 1920 × 1080 pixels, 07:50, 2018
The video is based on the reflections accompanying the creative stays within the Artist-in-Residence programs on the island of Lefkada in Greece and the Azores in Portugal. Music and sound design by Jacek Doroszenko.
The video uses virtual landscapes and digital distortions that often accompany computer applications and games. Inspired by virtual landscapes, I present how we strive to achieve a state of inner balance in an age of information overload. Despite technological advances, virtualization and digitalization of reality, we are still looking for rituals and spiritual practices that will allow us to reach a state of deep awareness or at least simulate it. In the video, I use a text I wrote based on meditations popular on the YouTube channel, listening to which helps to calm down, relax and achieve the desired results in various aspects of life. By using the alphabet of contemporaneity and looking at one of the most classic themes – a landscape, I attempt to present the very common in the digital age craving for relaxation in an idyllic environment.
The video was presented as part of many exhibitions and festivals, among others:
- Krakow Photomonth (PL), 2022
- Noorderlicht International Photo Festival (NL), 2021
- Simultan festival – Unstable state of things, Timișoara (RO), 2021
- Mediatons Biennale Polska, Warsaw (PL), 2020
- Digital Art Spa & Ewa Doroszenko, Breuninger Nuremberg (DE), 2020
- 16th Athens Digital Arts Festival (GR), 2020
- Photography Exhibition, Vilnius Photography Gallery, Lithuanian Photographers Association, Vilnius (LT), 2019
- How to Travel, Propaganda, Warsaw (PL), 2019
- GENERATE! Festival for Electronic Arts, Tübingen (DE), 2019
- Magmatism Pic-Nic at Pavilion 02 Magmatism, Venice (IT), 2019