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Daniel Hengst. Blooming Love (work in progress).

From August to October, at the RIXC residence artist Daniel Hengst (DE) will develop his VR artwork Blooming Love, which will be presented at the end of the residency during RIXC Lunch Talk. RIXC residency takes place within the framework of the EMAP / EMARE residency program, which is one of 15 European platforms funded by Creative Europe and the only one for digital media. Its aim is to support artists working in that field, especially emerging artists who work critically and in an innovative way with (digital but not only) technologies.

The Blooming Love artwork by Daniel Hengst is an immersive VR experience, in which the visitor finds himself in a seemingly strange and unfamiliar environment. Here, unusually colored leaves and fantastic flowers intertwine with unusual plant shapes and sizes. Plant stems pierce the human body without injuring it. Initially, the slightly vague tension caused by the shape, color and sound of the surroundings will intensify the intimate, original love affair between the visitor and the nature of these plants. Without restraint, plants merge with parts of the body and trees push air through wide-open, lustful human mouths. "Plant" and "human" forms merge. Visitors' head movements also offer the opportunity to interact in this state of ecstasy. The visitor is partly an actor / actress = lover and partly also an observer of their affair.

How does our relationship with plants and nature change when the love for nature is no longer the love of the mother, but very passionate, intimate-sexual?

Daniel Hengst has been working in media art since 2007. Lives and works in Leipzig, Germany, where he also received a degree in media technology from Leipzig University of Applied Sciences. As a media artist, he also explores the media and technology used to create his works. In order to make these different layers visible and perceptible to the viewers, he offers the opportunity to create personal constructions and additions to the experience provided by the artwork. This openness allows the viewer to shift the boundaries between nature and culture based on his or her view of a given topic.



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