Patrícia J. Reis Patrícia J. Reis

Low-tech paper pulp lab, 2022

Action/ workshop in collaboration with Ana Rita António 

Exhibition The 13th Havana Biennial

Estación Cultural Linea y 18, Vedado, Habana


25.03.2022  – 16.04.2022

Share Project :

Low-tech paper pulp lab a collaboration with Ana Rita António

The participatory installation Low-tech paper pulp lab aims at bringing together people from different backgrounds and mind sets to collaborate with the artists in a commodity chain performance designed for recycling and upcycling paper collected from the streets of Havana (from Pizza and other wasted papers). The installation acts as a community laboratory, offering a temporary space for sharing, caring, healing, doing & thinking-together about future economic, ecologic, social and affective sustainability. In a contemporary global context so-called Anthropocene, overruled by consumer capitalism and neo-liberal markets, accelerated technological development (only accessible to privileged consumers), degradation of natural resources (that can’t be repaired), it is urgent to evoke alternative scenarios for a self-sustainable desired future. We believe that one way to act and re-act is through deconstruction, questioning and subverting the system by reversing engineering, and defending access to open knowledge. Built upon the belief that art practice can be a critical impetus for change, the installation Low-tech paper pulp lab was thought as a potential tool for emancipation contributing to an Open source economy.   The installation Low-tech paper pulp lab is inviting participants to contribute by taking a place of their choice in the commodity chain. The recycling laboratory was designed like a “kitchen studio”, including different work stations, from collecting, sorting, shredding, pulping, de-inking, drying and modeling the paper. The recycling apparatus was designed in a way that collaborators work together in a close and intimate environment, inviting peer-to-peer and hand-to-hand knowledge transfer. The installation Low-tech paper pulp lab focuses on haptics and the physicality of matter in contrast with the prominent  excess of visuality dictated by digital media. The apparatus working flow creates conditions of possibility for both actors (human and matter), giving agency to individuals as makers and agency to matter as a materialisation of their interaction and relation.   The Low-tech paper pulp lab is assembled through a modular system designed under a grid available for free on an on-line platform called “open structures”, in which creatives around the world contribute with the design of parts, allowing the structure to be organically re-arranged and adapted to diverse purposes. With this system the artists have the desired flexibility to adapt the architecture of the installation to the venue available at the Havana Biennale. The design and small elements that compose the installation were chosen, taking into consideration that they can be transported by the artists via airplane. 

DIY Low-tech paper pulp made of wood modules