No Return

No Return
Roberto Becerra, 2023
Concrete, Wood, Crude oil, Showergel. 80x50x195cm
Part of “Second Hand“, art exhibition at Trakų Vokė Manor.

In this art installation, three fundamental elements, concrete, oil and wood, signifying minerals, energy and nature, are brought together to explore the omnipresent role of [these] resources in our contemporary infrastructure. The piece serves as a reflection on our inextricable connection to these elements, even in a world where they often remain hidden from our immediate view.

The choice of these materials and forms, underlines the abstract nature of our relationship with these vital resources. They are fundamental to our daily existence, yet often concealed within the complex systems and technologies, and their elementary form is distilled into digital abstractions, like the data on a hard drive.

This installation both critiques and calls for awareness regarding the origins of our modern reality. It draws attention to our heavy reliance on overexploited resources and the need to consider the environmental impact of our actions. At the same time, it celebrates our remarkable capacity to manipulate and shape the world around us. It stands as an interface between these elements, highlighting their interconnectedness and the continuum they represent.

Ultimately, this artwork invites viewers to contemplate the complex relationship between the natural world, energy, and the man-made environment. It prompts us to recognize the role we play in shaping our reality, while also acknowledging the importance of responsible resource management and environmental guardianship.

The artist also initiates a self-critique of the artwork, by drawing attention to how this piece, like many contemporary other ones, uses commoditized bought materials. A seeming contradiction with the call for awareness, and points at the frivolous use of resources. The artist then focuses on the reusability of his designs: art pieces’ materials that will be re-utilised in subsequent works. 

[crude oil is deemed “extremely dangerous”, and its fumes can cause acute damage, therefore the artists decides to not to expose it openly, but to display it in a closed container]