BIG B∆CTERI∆ is both an art archive and an original artwork by Sabine Kacunko. It features bacteria as the facts of the permanently changing and sensing living matter. It documents microbially induced transformation processes when applicated to art and heritage, health and societies as well as to analogue and digital ecosystems.
The artwork itself is a digital tableau that consists of 1024 images in 1:2-format, distributed in a 32 x 32-grid. The scalable images are classified in an approximately chronological order, building loose groups linked to the corresponding artistic projects by Sabine Kacunko (2003-2023). Clicking on images allows exploring the histories behind them.
The BIG B∆CTERI∆ tableau is incorporated into a metadata-system consisting of textual, pictorial and videographic documents. As such, BIG B∆CTERI∆ documents also some paradoxes of its own ongoing conceptual, material, visual and legal transformations:
<1. In the first stage, analogue still life photographs were produced;
<2. In the second stage, the respective negatives were “animated” due to colonization by bacteria;
<3. In the third stage, the decay of the b/w negatives was documented with a digital imaging procedure that generated a variety of colorful microscopic images of the pigment-producing bacteria;
<4. In the fourth stage, some of these images were projected onto the large architectural surfaces, from which they stem – they moved from the artistic studio and scientific lab out to the public space to initiate the open discourse about health and heritage;
<5. In the present stage (the BIG B∆CTERI∆-webpage), the BIG B∆CTERI∆ archive is set up as a free accessible work-in-progress to question and publicly discuss the inimitability of the presented life cycle of non-fungible life that becomes a non-fungible art (and perhaps vice versa).
<6. In the subsequent phase, the presented image collection of the collected, artistically manipulated digital bacteria images (collages and sequences, of which there are no longer any material test remains) will be converted into a limited NFT collection. What will this next (legal) transformation entail? Will the move of the BIG B∆CTERI∆ tableau into private ownership within the blockchain ecosystem also mean the disappearance of the artwork and archive from public view?