SITUATION #114: Revital Cohen & Tuur Van Balen, D/AlCuNdAu, 2015 and Avant Tout, Discipline, 2017


Fotomuseum Winterthur

D/AlCuNdAu, aluminium, lava, copper, neodymium, gold, 2015 © Revital Cohen & Tuur Van Balen
Avant Tout, Discipline, printed voiles, 2017 © Revital Cohen & Tuur van Balen

Digital devices and infrastructures haven’t just consolidated global communication, they have also virtualised it: information is transmitted via our screens, usually without our awareness of its material traces. In these works Revital Cohen & Tuur Van Balen use installation and objects to trace the geopolitical complexities and material reality of everyday communication processes.

The images in Avant Tout, Discipline, generated using a game engine, depict a coltan mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Coltan from Congo is used in almost any smartphone or game console and has played an important role in the spiral of conflict and violence that has gripped the region over the past decades.

For the work D/AICuNdAu, the metals contained within 25 hard drives from an Icelandic data centre were extracted – aluminium (Al), copper (Cu), neodymium (Nd), and gold (Au) – and melded with volcanic rock to produce a new mineral formation. While the rock may seem natural, the process of transformation highlights the complexity associated with the increasing interconnection and pervasion of virtual and material realities.

More by Revital Cohen & Tuur van Balen:

Kindly supported by Art Mentor Foundation Lucerne.

Cluster: Infrastructure