Preston, Julieanna. ground-bearing [video installation in group exhibition]. At Lowlands Deleuze Scholars Conference A GRIN WITHOUT A CAT, AKI Academy of Art and Design, Enschede, The Netherlands, May 2017.


Coupled with my knowledge of the history of Netherlands landscape and my recent visit to Enschede and AKI, I take interest in the subject and material of ground, a topic that relates the country’s sustaining efforts to hold back the surge of the sea with artificially constructed land forms such as dikes, canals and re-constituted land in relation to Deleuzian philosophical notions of assemblage: a specific, yet non hierarchical affordance that reimagines the world of possibilities, an irreducible complexity of situation. This work reconsiders pervasive conditions of ground as solid, stratified and original in the context of the Dutch landscape understood as a constructed material assemblage. It highlights the Roombeek Art and Culture district’s on-going history of redevelopment including its textile industry, fireworks blast, water management scheme, and residential development, all events that have aided the redistribution, reformation and re-composition of the surface of this portion of the earth.

Like ground-wearing, ground-bearing bears alternative notions of ground that find value in the subtle differences between ground, soil, dirt and land in this unique geographical territory. The video experiments with videos taken during the performance to understand a place where land is not stable, strong or a place of geological origin but a state of manufactured drained dryness. The threat of drowning or at the very least over-saturation is a norm.

This video installation was supported with an artist's residency from AKI Academy of Art and Design.