The clap of a butterfly’s wings and the buzzing sounds of sudden movement of an imperceptible brown moth. Eyes closed, these sounds are an intoxicating hum; drawn to the night like a lullaby.
Ananda Serné’s short film Insect sing-along (2022) was developed during her residency at airWG. It follows the lifecycle of a butterfly: caterpillar, cocoon, to the final metamorphosis towards adult form. Insects are often our closest animal neighbours, and yet, are overlooked in ecological terms. The final form of the butterfly suddenly morphs into a robotic insect developed at the Delft University of Technology. These prototypes could potentially help with the pollination tasks of dwindling insect populations. The surprising history of lepidopterans and technology stems from a remarkable anecdote of the original “computer bug” - a squashed moth that affected early computer operations in 1947.
Behind the screen, a neon blue glow draws the audience upstairs to a sculptural light work. Moths have a strange fascination for artificial sources of light. It is thought that they fly at a constant angle to the light of the moon in order to navigate. They often mistake artificial light for moonlight and in this way lamps distract them and they seem to forget about everything else.
At sunset and nightfall, Serné presents a new performance in the garden developed together with the vocal ensemble Genetic Choir. During regular exhibition hours, a sound piece developed and recorded with voice artist Miyuki Inoue will accompany the silent film.
The exhibition and residency are kindly supported by: Stichting Niemeijer Fonds, Amarte Fonds, Mondriaan Fonds, and Billedkunstnernes Vederlagsfond.