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Specter[al]s of Nature - for NaturArchy catalogue

Spectrals installation view landscape
Installation view Specter[al]s of Nature (EU Green Week)

Specter[al]s of Nature is an artwork informed by scientific earth observation research on surface water changes. It is the result of speculative cartography inspired by the time maps in the Atlas of Global Surface Water Dynamics, which progresses into 3D water beings with ghostly margins and uncertain boundaries. Rather than being determined solely by the topography and depth of water bodies, Specters of Nature emphasizes the role of time as a third dimension, illustrating how human activities have irreversibly altered these ecosystems. Its primary objective is to stimulate critical thinking about our limited understanding of time and space, which often results in our disconnection from nature and actions that are detrimental to the environment. This project envisions a post-anthropogenic and decolonialized cartography, imaginatively addressing the expansive electromagnetic visual spectrum offered by remote sensing technology and its capacity for long-term documentation. Through the creative amalgamation of composite imagery derived from satellite technology, it presents a vivid depiction of a dynamic, living cartography that encompasses both human and nonhuman ways of seeing. Simultaneously, it compresses temporal changes spanning over four decades, providing a thought-provoking representation of the evolving landscape. In essence, Specter[al]s of Nature invites us to contemplate the intricate relationship between humanity, nature, and time, transcending conventional boundaries and inspiring us to reimagine our ways of mapping the world within the evolving tapestry of existence.

Medium: For the audiovisual Installation: Custom software, 1ch video (color) | 2ch sound, 4K, 15 min, loop. For the sculptures: Multi-Material 3D Print on Stratasys’ PolyJet J850™ Prime 3D Printer (Voxel-Printing); materials: VeroClear, VeroCyanVivid, VeroUltraWhite, VeroUltraBlack; various dimensions between 295W x 280H x 80D mm and 380 x 350 x 80 mm / Weight: between 3.1kg – 7.8kg.

Ingrid Mayrhofer-Hufnagl | Alan Belward & Elahe Rajabiani 

In collaboration with: Luca de Felice, Peter Strobl, Maciej Krzysztowic (JRC); Lorenzo de Simone, Malgorzata Wrobel (NEB), Stratasys Ltd, &  Benjamin Scoyez (sound engineer).

With the generous support of the Austrian Federal Ministry for Arts, Culture, Civil Service and Sport (BMKOES)/ Division IV: Arts and Culture

Residency Project: 

Presentation of Residency @ JRC: 


Ingrid Mayrhofer-Hufnagl

Ingrid Mayrhofer-Hufnagl is an intradisciplinary artist, architect, and researcher from Austria whose work bridges the realms of architecture, art, and science. Her diverse creations range from architectural installations, video art, and sculpture, to scientific research all infused with cutting-edge technology to explore innovative ways of synergizing the built and natural environments. By delving into scales from the planetary to the microscopic, her work transcends human temporal and spatial perception, challenging our own understanding of existence and the unseen consequences of our actions. Ingrid holds a Ph.D. in architecture from the University of Innsbruck, where she leads groundbreaking projects on AI and architecture. Her artistic work has been showcased at numerous festivals and exhibitions. She is also the editor of "Architecture, Futurability and the Untimely: On the Unpredictability of the Past" and has contributed peer-reviewed articles to various esteemed journals. 




Alan Belward

Alan Belward works at the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre in Italy where he is Acting Director and head of the Food Security Unit in the Directorate for Sustainable Resources. Alan has served on numerous inter- national science panels including the Global Climate Ob- serving System, the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-2 Mission Advisory Group and the NASA and USGS’ Landsat Science Team. He has a BSc in Plant Biology from New- castle University, as well as MPhil and PhD degrees from Cranfield University’s School of Agriculture Food and Environment and is a Fellow of the UK’s Royal Society of Biology.

Elahe Rajabiani

Elahe is a designer at the EU Policy lab. She uses design tools and methods to help scientists and policy makers tackle complex systemic issues in a more creative and collaborative way. Before joining the EU commission, Elahe was the creative lead at the Open Innovation Centre of the University of Bologna. She designed international programs that brought together the academia and the industry. She led multidisciplinary and cross-generational teams and applied design to develop new ideas in various sectors such as pharma, food, automotive and entertainment. She was also a design educator and coach for student programs at the Design Factory Global Network and the Challenge Based Innovation at CERN IdeaSquare. She is passionate about speculative design but her interest is in Design in all its forms and functions. She believes in the visual, tangible, optimistic and proactive spirit of design to give a better form to the future.

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