Kornspeicher and Inspektorhaus
at Novalis-Museum Wiederstedt

Dendriten [Dendrites]

Schäfergasse 6 Kornspeicher 06456 Arnstein, OT Wiederstedt

Juliane Henrich’s view of the Mansfeld region is sharpened and at the same time speculatively distorted by a combination of contemporary analytical and artistic sensitivity. In the absence of mining, she sees the presence of data mining, which turns the behavior of users of electronic devices into veins of ore and the data storage devices into mines. In the absence of copper processing, she perceives the presence of wiring electronic devices from the same precious metals. Can there be good mining? This question, which is no less pressing today than it was in Novalis’ time, has taken on an additional dimension in digital culture. The early Romantic poet processed his experiences as a mining engineer in literary form. In the poems, prose texts and fragments he left behind, he evokes an aesthetic view of nature, emotionally connected and guided by higher values, which does not permit the unrestrained exploitation of mineral resources that he himself encouraged through his professional practice. For her work Dendriten [Dendrites], which was created for My Precious, Juliane Henrich had some of his text fragments completed by artificial intelligence. In her multi-channel video installation, she combines this with shots of mines and stockpiles and the computer generated visualization of a key scene from Novalis’ novel fragment Heinrich von Ofterdingen, as well as with found footage from the Internet, the largest public site of data extraction. Dendrites are the branch-like connections between nerve cells in the brain. This structure is imitated in artificial neural networks. Crystals also grow in dendrite form.


Juliane Henrich