BERLIN 2022 /

Patricia Domínguez


Matrix Vegetal (2022)


Single-channel 4K video with sound, dry Brugmansia flowers ● Duration: 21'14'' ● Commissioned by Screen City Biennial and supported by Cecilia Brunson Projects ● Location: Archenhold Observatory, Museum of Celestial Science ● Image credits: Patricia Domínguez, Matrix Vegetal (2022), production image. Photo: Emilia Martín

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Growing out of her artistic interpretation of learning undertaken in Madre de Dios (Peru), Patricia Domínguez’s Matrix Vegetal is a filmic inquiry into experimental ethnobotany, South American quantum thinking, dream fiction, and organic connection technologies, in search of ways to make the vegetal and the spiritual worlds more perceptible.

As part of her research for this work, the artist spent a month apprenticed to the curandero Amador Aniceto, a traditional folk healer living and practicing in Madre de Dios. Under his guidance, Domínguez learned how to activate an intimate process of connecting with the vibrant, multi-species language and knowledge that can be found in the vegetal world. In order to realize this, the artist worked to create a temporary disengagement from the “digital matrix”—a process which required patience and a sustained focus on the present moment—in order to form an alliance with plants and an alternative “vegetal” matrix. As a result, Domínguez established a connection with the more-than-human languages of the earth, and the resulting work speculatively accesses a portal to the quantum world which reveals how plants and their multiple spirits might operate. Matrix Vegetal also includes a video interview with Amador Aniceto, highlighting his personal view and experience of this plant world.

At the Archenhold Observatory in Berlin, Matrix Vegetal can be found at the Museum of Celestial Science, next to a large iron meteorite. By encountering this cosmic object in its visual and conceptual dialogue with the video installation, the viewer is invited to explore questions about extraterrestrial life and plant minds, as well as speculative futures in connection with the vegetal world. Visitors are encouraged to sense these alternative universes by closing their eyes and touching the meteorite.

Filmed in Madre de Dios, Puerto Maldonado (Peru) and Santiago (Chile).
Camera and direction of photography: Emilia Martín 
Assistant camerawoman and direct sound recording: Ce Pams
Music: Futuro Fósil
Microscope images: Ce Pams and Patricia Domínguez at Fernán Federici's Lab
Performers: Claudia Blin and Pedrito (the bird)
Design and green shield realization: Taller Dínamo
Design and 3D animation: Alvaro Muñoz and Valentina Maldonado
Post Production: Thomas Woodroffe
VFX Animations: Thomas Woodroffe and Simón Jarpa
Video editing, script and sound: Patricia Domínguez

Acknowledgements to the plant world, Amador Aniceto Gatica and Rosa Inoue Fernández


Patricia Domínguez

Patricia Domínguez Claro (b. 1984, Santiago, Chile) is an artist, educator, and defender of the living. Her practice combines experimental research on ethnobotany, healing practices, and the corporatization of wellbeing in her practice. Her work focuses on the transference of patterns of extraction and overworking from colonial times into today’s neoliberal age.

Her work was recently exhibited in: Screen Series, New Museum, NY; Rooted Beings, Wellcome Collection, London (all 2022); Gwangju Biennale, South Korea; Transmediale, Berlin; La Casa Encendida, Madrid (all 2021), How to Tread Lightly, Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid; Madre Drone, CentroCentro, Madrid; Cosmic Tears, Yeh Art Gallery, New York (all 2020); Green Irises, Gasworks, London; MOMENTA | Biennale de l’Image, Montreal; The Trouble is Staying, Meet Factory, Prague (all 2019); What is going to happen is not “the future,” but what we are going to do, ARCOMadrid; Working for the Future Past, SEMA, Seoul (both 2018), among others. 

She has recently contributed to books such as Health (MIT Press/Whitechapel: Documents of Contemporary Art, 2020), Season 1 for st_age from TBA21 (2020). Recent awards include the Beca Fundación Botín grant (2022), and the SIMETRIA prize to participate in a residency at CERN, Switzerland (2021). She is currently the director of the experimental ethnobotanical platform Studio Vegetalista.

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