Composting: something from nothing

Gwenyth Chao


Featuring ingestible biomaterial sculptures by Gwenyth Chao, the (re)imagined bodies and worlds in her work are situated in depleted sites across our exhausted planet in a time after the age of capitalist extraction. Chao’s experiments speculate that the materials – for sustenance, building, creative endeavors – of our near futures will be made of reconstituted debris. She transmutes food refuse into artmaking materials like gels, clays, composites, plastics and paper. Her process explores the possibilities for a necessarily emergent practice to be informed by an ecological awareness. Chao transplants thinking processes, misuses making techniques and retrofits tools from different knowledge bodies to ask: what possibilities can emerge through transdisciplinary practices?

/stāj/ 2.2 is an active making space that drives the work and research of Gwenyth Chao’s materially-responsive experimental practice. Behind the sculptures and installations, Chao’s transdisciplinary process is necessarily emergent and fueled by an endless sense of curiosity for what other lives materials can have in our current world. She adapts thinking and making techniques from other spaces and experiments with how to re-world with waste. Through the exhibition, Chao will intermittently be working in this making space and viewers can by chance see the artist’s active process in real time. To be part of the co-experimentation lab, viewers can contribute to the compost donation or register for a June 24th bioplastic casting workshop , or a co-experimentation lab on either June 11th, or June 25th.