22 May | 20:30

There Be Dragons: Talk and Q&A with Lea Kannar-Lichtenberger #155

Doors: 19:30
Start time: 20:30
Entrance 3 to 6 euro (up to your offer)

Talk 'There Dragons: human impact on the environmentally sensitive Galapagos and Lord Howe Islands' by bio-artist Lea Kannar-Lichtenberger

Moderated by Christian de Lutz (Art Laboratory Berlin) 

Event organised in cooperation with Art Laboratory Berlin





In the Age of the Anthropocene, this talk will explore how humans impact on our world both by their presence and indirectly by their lifestyle. This is a science-art investigation of tourism and its effects on closed eco systems, specifically the Galapagos and Lord Howe Islands (both World Heritage Listed). Through my art investigations I work to bring awareness to the public in order to create a more relevant understanding of the issues surrounding human impact on the environment and its long term effects.

Through the interaction between the worlds of art and science I explore evolution in the Anthropocene, a harbinger for the future of our human interaction on this earth. Increasing tourism instigated by economic change and the media’s current focus on the apparently pristine, remote and untouched landscapes, creates expectations of the natural environment. With the Islands of Galapagos and Lord Howe acting as microcosms for our biosphere, this dialogue will explore the uncertainties that surround population growth, extinction and the dissemination of toxic materials into the environment.

My research and resulting artworks explore, through photography, video, microscopy, sound and installation, connections on how utopia becomes a dystopia, we are trapped in our desires for a unique experience; how modernisation and the need for the tourist dollar become can become weapons for a bleak future for the Galapagos and Lord Howe Islands.


Lea Kannar-Lichtenberger has completed two Masters degrees at Sydney College of the Arts - University of Sydney Australia.   Working with the methodology and within the oeuvre of Bio-Art and using critical inquiry she continues to explore the world of evolution as a metaphor. Researching the progress of scientific development and evolutionary theory based upon Charles Darwin’s work, including ‘On the Origin of Species’. Her work explores the Anthropocene, the current age of man, our influence is all encompassing and surrounding. She initiated her analogy for evolution using the common Dandelion plant and cells as well as the cell structures from a Tree Dandelion Sonchus canarlensis.

Working with cells and crystals that began at her residency at SVA (School of Visual Arts – Manhattan), in 2013 she explored and commented on evolution and its possible outcome with modern DNA manipulations. Seeking to achieve a DNA sequence of the Tree Dandelion, whilst exploring the cell imagery that was only touched on during this residency, she returned to SVA in 2014 to continue exploring both plants at a second residency.

Exploring various mediums from glass, ceramics and print to film photography and drawing. Each medium is chosen to best represent the message she wishes to convey. Such as in Exploration I, in this series of works she has chosen clear PVC and printmedia – Silkscreen. The clear PVC speaks to our society with its disposable world and its obsession with this material. It also creates a transparent space allowing the cell to float in a world surrounded by the modern world. By working with text formations, plants and film she creates metaphors that reflect and comment on the Anthropocene.



Christian de Lutz is a visual artist and curator, originally from New York. He works in photography, new media, video and installation. His artworks deal with social, political and cultural themes, with an emphasis on technology, migration and cultural borderlines. He has collaborated with artists and institutions in Germany, Spain and Southeast Europe as well as exhibiting in Europe, the USA and Japan.

As a co-founder of Art Laboratory Berlin he has curated over 30 exhibitions and developed a number of series, including Time and Technology and Synaesthesia as well as [macro]biologies & [micro]biologies. His curatorial work concentrates on the interface of art, science and technology in the 21st century. Additionally he has published numerous articles in journals and books, and is active in a number of collaborative organisations including transmediale/ re-Source, Synapse (Haus der Kulturen der Welt) and The Berlin Network of Free Project Spaces and Initiatives.