Emailerosion, corroding with emails


A biodegradable sculpture, available to anyone who wants to contribute to shape it remotely. That’s how Emailerosion looks. It’s a installation conceived and built together by Ethan Ham, a sculptor, and Tony Muilemburg, a robotic designer. The sculpture is real, consists of a big block of soap, and it’ll be exhibited in the Portland Art Institute’s Gallery. But if you want to enjoy it, you have to be in the virtual territory. Sure enough you can shape its form simply sending a mail to a specific address. Depending on the mail content the sculpture, whose image is streamed online, will vary its position and will rotate, or it’ll get a splash, that’ll erode a part of it. Moreover, thanks to the online archive it’s possible to search all the modifications occurred during time, that led to the latest configuration. The work, even if it exists physically whatever the individual does, enlivens, lives and evolves as the time passes thanks to the individual actions. From being a simple spectator he becomes a co-author, becoming part of a dynamism and mutation poetics. This metamorphic ability materializes in the possibility of producing sensible modifications through virtual instruments, becoming central in the work’s existence. It constitutes the innovative core, corroding some of the art privileges, as the ‘unicum’ and the ‘absolute’. It reduces the ideological distance amongst the work of art, the observer and the environmental context, starting to connect this poles through poetics and technological resources.