HeHe - Pollstream (Champs d'ozone and Nuage Vert)

HeHe - Pollstream (Champs d'ozone and Nuage Vert)

project link: http://hehe.org.free.fr/hehe/pollstream/index.html

Pollstream is an intervention in environmental ethics. It creates a series of interactive environments in which members of the audience are in a process of monitoring localised pollution at the very same time that they produce it. The audience is required to conceptualise themselves as responsible collectively and individually for their emissions. As consumers our default position is one of disengagement we rely on others to clear up our mess, to hide it in landfill, for example, or toxics inside our body. And the abstraction of inescapably globalised pollution, escalating beyond the control of any individual nation state, can easily undermine a sense that localised actions are worthwhile/effective.

HeHe - Pollstream (Champs d'ozone and Nuage Vert)

Pollstream, using visual, kinetic and sonic technologies, undermines these typical defences of disengagement by speeding up the normal time it takes for our actions in and on the environment to have consequences. Across a number of projects, a sense of constant rather than delayed feedback is created. Thus, in Nuage Vert, lasers and a camera tracking system project colour coded information onto a waste burning plant/power plant within a local area that is visible to all residents. The movement of the plume changes colour to show levels of energy being consumed at any given time; the chimney becomes a community measuring tape, a shared canvas. But there is an irony here: Nuage Vert aestheticises pollution while seeking to draw the viewer's critical attention to it. It becomes a sign of wonder, a spectacle; a space is opened up for the spectator. Could they become mesmorised by a beauty that is, literally and metaphorically, a smokescreen? Will they retreat to making this (terrible) beauty another defence? The PollStream project speculates on aesthetic and contextual ways of materializing pollution in ways that alter our perception.The following three proposals have been derived from very specific geographical conditions and locations.

HeHe - Pollstream (Champs d'ozone and Nuage Vert)

artist bio
HeHe (Helen Evans and Heiko Hansen) reverse cultural engineers the technological systems that surround us: From transport design to pollution monitoring, from public advertisement to meteorology, from architecture to public lightning. Their work seeks to go back in time, re-work past and as a result, re-phrase the existing into a new critical usage, a social function, with the spectator in its epicentre. At a time of ongoing technological expansion, progress starts to fray on its edges. How can we use and re-use, not only as a semiotic resistance against those who prey on the new, but also to return back to original invention, which have become clouded by recursive innovations. In this way, the work of HeHe is a process of reduction and subtraction until they find a point of departure, from which they can develop a usage with a plain functionality.

HeHe is a collective and a non-profit making organisation for production, founded in France by Helen Evans (United Kingdom, 1972) & Heiko Hansen (Germany, 1970). Helen and Heiko's work has been shown in a range of cultural contexts.

Their installations have been presented at the Centre George Pompidou Centre in Paris, Triennale in Milan, V2 Institute for Unstable Media in Rotterdam, Electrohype in Malmo, ISEA Nagoya, CynetArt in Dresden, the Palazzo delle Papesse Centre for Contemporary Art in Sienna. In 2001 they were awarded the CyNet Art Award for interactive installation.

They have published scientific papers and held research positions in informatics laboratories such as: Frauenhofer in Germany and INRIA Futurs in France (National Institute for Research in Informatics and Mechanics).

Both Helen and Heiko have taught young artists and designers within both art education and artist-run organisations: including masters students at Interaction Design Institute Ivrea, both undergraduate and masters design students at ENSCI/Les Ateliers in Paris, and undergraduate media students at the University of Amsterdam.

They benefited from two years residency at the prodigious artist factory Mainsd'oeuvres, a multidisciplinary site for cultural projects based in St-Ouen (Northern Paris), as well as the Pixel Ache residency at NIFCA (Nordic Institute for Contemporary Art) and a residency at Makrolab in Scotland with ArtsCatalyst. HeHe Association has been generously supported by DICREAM and CNAP (Ministry of Culture, France).

HeHe association collaborates with a range of companies such as Beauty Prestige International in Paris, Cluster Magazine in Italy and Interface-Z in Paris. Galerie Quang, Paris, represents "Collectif HeHe".