New collaboration with artist Jenna Sutela and Primer


Holobiont  (video still), Jenna Sutela, 2018

Holobiont (video still), Jenna Sutela, 2018

Artist Jenna Sutela and Primer, a platform for artistic and organisational development, have initiated a collaborative process with support from the Finnish Cultural Institute in Denmark. 

Over the next two years, Sutela will have access to the biomimetic factory, research facilities and staff of the global water technology company Aquaporin, which Primer operates in and with. Primer is a platform for artistic and organisational development. One scope of Primer is to study the aesthetics of Aquaporin’s material flows, while aiming to weave out potentials for artistic, scientific or organisational products. Sutela’s work explores biological and computational systems, often involving microorganisms, such as the extremophilic Bacillus subtilis nattō bacterium or synthetic life forms, like an artificial neural network. It aims to contribute to a culture based on interspecies collaboration. 

The collaborative process between Sutela and Primer will consider the polymeric water filter membranes produced by Aquaporin as material for wearable textiles. The process was initiated in the form of a short research residency in spring 2019 where Primer and Aquaporin provided a work environment for Sutela, while facilitating a series of meetings with individuals in both of the organisations as well as with relevant experts at universities and art institutions in Copenhagen. Another research residency will take place in 2020 and the process will finally lead up to a presentation of Sutela’s project as part of Primer’s programming at the Aquaporin factory in 2021. Beyond an exhibition at the space in Kongens Lyngby, the work will also be made available for a broader international audience in the form of a publication on- or offline.

Aquaporin biomimetic water filter, 2018

Aquaporin biomimetic water filter, 2018

Jenna Sutela works with words, sounds, and other living materials. Her audiovisual pieces, sculptures, and performances seek to identify and react to precarious social and material moments, often in relation to technology. Sutela's work has been presented at museums and art contexts internationally, including Guggenheim Bilbao, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, and Serpentine Galleries. She is a Visiting Artist at The MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST) in 2019-20.

Aslak Aamot Kjærulff works with creating capacities for engaging in systemic problems through emerging organisational forms. Aslak has co-founded the transdisciplinary studio Diakron, as well as Primer, a platform for artistic and organisational development housed in the global water technology company Aquaporin. These collective practices are currently being developed in local partnerships as well as in international networks with institutions such as The Technical University of Denmark, The Dutch Art Institute, Moderna Museet and Serpentine Galleries.