water carrier landscapes by elise morin water carrier landscapes by elise morin
dec 11, 2012

water carrier landscapes by elise morin

‘water carrier landscapes’ by elise morin 



there are phenomenons, in this world, that spark our imagination and excite our dreams, a certain gaston bachelard would not disagree.

meteors are of this category, these eruptions of aqueous, gaseous, electric, or optical matter nourish our contemplation of the skies with events that amaze us, that scare or perhaps trouble us. rainbows, lightning, hail or simply lingering showers ripple through our lives, leaving sublime memories but also times of difficult harvest or challenged mobility. no wonder we spend so much time scanning the atmosphere. water seems to occupy an unequalled position. omnipresent, it inhabits both the air and earth, not to mention how much space it occupies in our own bodies: intangible form. in turn, blurry wave, vaporous cloud, element of life, water particles form and unite one second, only to disperse and re-assemble the next – body of matter.


what paris-based artist elise morin delicately orchestrates with her thousands of test-tubes, pointed towards the sky, is nothing less than the fragility of an element that generally seems quite straightforward. but water is not that clear, and the fact that its future stands at the crossroadsof conflicting relationships between states and regions is to fear. in an international law article poetically entitled ‘whom do clouds belong to’, fabienne quilleré-mazjoub questions the legal status of clouds. one learns that, in drought-stricken environments, clouds are subject to research on water sowing and recuperation to trigger rain. mocking the borders that nations have erected, the paths of clouds stem from winds, geological formations and now the blitz of silver iodide or hygroscopic salt-torches that are used to start rainfall and fog.



its green fluorescent colour will gradually disappear as a result of natural interventions, light and rain.



this diversion of the normal water cycle is far from being new, the aqueducts of the roman empire exist as proof. however what we must reflect on is the extent to which water management reveals geo-strategic stakes that intensify according to the evolution of technological means. what is left of nature if even rain and weather are being manipulated by us humans? echoing the synthetic nature of the man-made mlynský náhonn river in kosice, a heritage landmark of soviet urban planning, the fluorescein incapsulated in the test tubes reminds users of the complexrelationships that humans have developed with their environment, whether it be urban or rural. nature has never received as much attention from the scientific and political community as it is receiving today.



the tops of the test tubes are left open to allow the water and wind to pick up the chemical.



water carrier on the mlynsky nahon river in kosice, slovakia



fluorescein is a chemical used to draw underground water courses, resurgences, leaks, test the wastewater networks, find the path of unfamiliar networks, identify inversions between networks of wastewater and rains.



stagnant, here it is used cast against type favoring a pragmatic relationship, largely utilitarian and physical, domestic water, controlled and dominated.



the wooden structure loaded with test tubes filled with fluor, a fluorescein, a tracing chemical used in waterways.



its green fluorescent colour will gradually disappear as a result of natural interventions, light and rain.



the seven structures required 5000 test tubes.



setting up one of the seven structures before the white night arts festival.


the movement of the fluorescent green traces the river’s currents and the far reaching impact of pollution.



the structures were constructed in the artificial river which was then flooded.



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

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