Taavi Suisalu

Artist

Taavi Suisalu (EE)
Born in 1982 in Tallinn, Taavi Suisalu is working in the contexts of technology, sound and performance, mixing traditional and contemporary sensibilities and activating peripheral spaces for imaginative encounters. His practice is informed by phenomena of contemporary society and its relations to and use of technologies. He applies subjective research methods to study socio-cultural phenomena, being interested in the behaviour, perception and thinking of social beings. Taavi Suisalu has been exhibiting and performing since 2005, predominantly in Estonia, but also in the UK, Germany, Finland, Iceland, Switzerland, Russia, Belgium and the Baltic States. In 2014, he received the Young Estonian Artist Prize for curating a distributed exhibition throughout non-existent villages of Southern Estonia. In 2017, his work “Distant Self-Portrait” was awarded 2nd prize at the Riga Photography Biennial Awards. He currently lives and workes in Tallinn.  
Subocean botlights
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © Taavi Suisalu
  • © Taavi Suisalu
  • © Taavi Suisalu
  • © Taavi Suisalu
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © WRO Art Center
  • © WRO Art Center

Plants in Wardian cases connected to Internet via mobile broadband with public static IPs, growth lights via fiber optic side glow cable triggered by and plant rotation speed controlled by the activity of bots toward the specific plant.

It is well known that most of intercontinental communication relies heavily on the submarine fiber optic cables. This network carries threads of light as thin as tenth of human hair while being as existential to technological societies as the sun is for the plants. We are hanging by a thread while the artificial sun rays plunge through the oceans and light up our faces via bright screens. Whilst the sun here is a metaphore, it is also partly factual, as solar power and fossil fuels power substantial part of ‘the cloud’, the invisible infrastructure that lays foundation to the global village. 

Subocean botlights introduces baits into these networks and lures in threads of light from different parts of the globe. The Wardian cases function as miniature closed ecosystems and also as islands in the network between things – the Internet. Any device connected to this network becomes a target for automated processes – bots – whose motives are mostly unknown. Each plant then becomes an object of interest to these robots whose communicative acts, streams of light, once passed the floors of oceans, are lit back into our environment as bursts of growth light, giving them an agenda they are unaware of.

The work invites to consider horizons, artificial intelligence and the resurgence of automation and its role in the overwhelmingly connected and technological societies and its possible relationships with humans/nature.