Contemporary technologies are forging and transforming new invisible links between various spheres of human activity. Artists are investigating the nature of these links and the models of their interaction. They present a new vision and pose more ambitious challenges. These challenges include the construction of both intra-specific and inter-specific communication; the recreation of vanished species of plants (and trees in particular); the ecological education of the population – and, more broadly, environmental protection.
The terms "Dendro-art" and "dendro-artist", which I have introduced, reflect the birth and crystallization of a new school within Bio-art, which we now witness. The definition of Dendro-art as an independent artistic phenomenon has been one of the most significant discoveries made during my 4-year-long PhD research in Sorbonne, Art & Sience department (under the direction of Prof. Olga Kisseleva).
Dendro-art is a school within modern bio-art, an art&science practice that constructs a new relationship between humanity and the plant world in general – and trees in particular. This relationship is framed as a partnership; it is based on the philosophical and scientific conception of "living systems", and it shapes a new ecological consciousness.
In the projects of Dendro-art, the status of "artist" does not belong exclusively to the human, but is shared with the tree. And this is a new situation in art. The leading role in promoting the ideas of Dendro-art belongs to Prof. Olga Kisseleva. To achieve their goals, teams of artists and scientists under the direction of Prof. Olga Kisseleva are incorporating various sensors into the technologies she has developed, such as T2N and T2T.
T2N is a revolutionary technology allowing for interspecific "communication". The trees taking part in this project are "emitting" and "receiving" a constant stream of information. In collaboration with the CNRS Institute, the Art & Science Laboratory has developed a series of sensors and an electronic system for processing this data. The analysis of the information visualizes the connection of plant biorhythms with the surrounding world through an expressive language of sound, light, and color intensity.
T2T is a revolutionary technology allowing for intraspecific "communication". The system sensors receive the data, measure and process the information, transmit it to the antennas, and send the signals to the Network. The conversation between the trees is "created" by the Lora Network, and it represents the intersection of the work of the artists, linguists, and botanists who interpret what the trees are "saying" and transmit this "speech" to the Global Network. In the Orange center, there is a device for transmitting and displaying the "tweets" of trees.
"Listening to Trees across the Jordan River" by Olga Kisseleva and Lilia Chak is a new ambitious Dendro-art project, which was exhibited in 2019-2020 at the Negev Museum of Art, in Beersheva, Israel. It served as the capstone of the system of studying Dendro-art works, since it finally affirmed the independent existence of this school of modern art. This high-profile exhibition summarized the experience of all the previous projects dedicated to the subject of the "tree".
The "Listening to Trees across the Jordan River" project has enabled us to make our utopian ideas reality – transcending the dogmas of anthropocentrism vis-à-vis "nonhuman" entities and establishing communication with the surrounding plant world.