The Center for the Living Things is the research institution founded in 2016 by artist Diana Lelonek, in order to examine, collect and popularise the knowledge concerning new humanotic nature forms. All exhibits gathered in the Institute’s collection are abandoned objects, used and no longer needed commodities – wastes of human overproduction, which have become the natural environment for many living organisms. Specimens were found in illegal waste dumping site, where the transgression of man-derived objects and plant tissues take place. These hybrids of plants and artificial objects are difficult to classify, as they are contemporaneously animate and inanimate. Center for the Living Things is aimed to describe mechanisms appearing in the sphere of rejection and uselessness. In this sphere, products are no longer tools used by people. Products participates in almost every process that occurs in biosphere, hence we can’t definitively divide economic or social processes from so-called natural process.
On the other hand, the Institute’s activity is devoted to observe the moss, plants on the exhibited objects.This organisms do not recognize the term “unusable”, hence they create simple and complete system. The system is based on symbiotic circulation in contrast to capitalism, linear compulsion of progress. Center for the Living Things is aimed to focus attention particularly on these process, pertaining and comparing them to man-developed processes and capitalist overproduction, searching for connections and possible alternatives. The permanent exhibition of the Institute’s collection is situated at Botanical Garden in Poznan (www.obuam.robia.pl). Moreover the Institute organizes temporary exhibitions and presentations. The collection is being constantly widened.
Diana Lelonek explores the subject of relationships between humans and other species. Her projects are critical responses to the processes of over-production, unlimited growth. In her work she uses photography, living matter, and found objects. Her work is interdisciplinary and often appears at the interface of art and science. Lelonek graduated from the department of Photography in the Faculty of Multimedia Communication at the University of Art in Poznań, Poland and is currently enrolled as a doctoral candidate of Interdisciplinary PhD Studies there. She works as a tutor in the Intermedia and Photography Departments at University of Art in Poznań. Lelonek won several international competitions, including, among others: Show Off during the Kraków Photomonth Festival (2014), ReGeneration 3 at the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne (2015), Honourable mention at WRO Art Media Biennale (2017).
She exhibited her work at the Centre of Contemporary Art in Warsaw (2015), National Art and Culture Museum Mystetskyi Arsenal, Kiev (2017), Quad Gallery, Derby (2016), Le Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne (2015), Centro Nacional de las Artes à Mexico city (2016).