Apian (Aladin Borioli, Ellen Lapper, Harry Bloch and Joris Landman)

Rapid Response Fellow
2020 – 2020

After completing a Bachelor in Photography at the Ecole Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne (2014), Aladin Borioli pursued his own artistic practice and developed the DIY humanities research project Apian. Apian explores the age-old interspecies relationship between bees and humans. This research brought him closer to the humanities, hence the decision to undertake a master’s degree in Visual and Media Anthropology at the Freie Universität Berlin (2018). His work borrows methods from ethnography and art and combine them with the practice of beekeeping. The results are polymorphous ethnographies, which mix different media such as text, photography, sound, videos. ‘Apian’ also aims to be collaborative and has been a site for meeting around shared sensibilities, for example with the neurobiologist Randolf Menzel and the artists Laurent Güdel and Ellen Lapper.

Rapid Response Project

The Intimacy Machine is a digital artwork and web platform exploring the age-old interspecies relationship between bees and humans. It presents a multi-dimensional artist-led ethnographic study on the effect of emerging for-profit technologies utilized within the world of beekeeping. The work points to the broader implications of these interventions across the larger agricultural industry, and offers a blueprint or call for technology that takes into account the perspective of bees and knowledge collected over thousands of years of human and bee relationships. How can technology open up opportunities for more intimate and thorough interspecies relationships?