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Algae Object Field, 2019

Wageningen University & Research

Work period Lenneke van der Goot for mIR Project @ Wageningen University & Research 

This winter MIR is a guest at the Wageningen Unversity & Research site. Two visual artists will each fulfil a two-month working period; both artists have a link with science. Lenneke van der Goot will make a floor drawing with her homemade green algae chalk. Due to the unstable pigments in the algae; the drawing will discolour over time. Algae from WUR’s AlgaePARC form the basis of Lenneke van der Goot’s home-made chalk. It shows the movement of construction and the inevitable decline. Her chalk objects wear out when making a floor drawing, in which different algae types determine the colors. These pigments are unstable, so  the initial intensity fades with the passage of time. The work in progress is constantly transforming and eventually decays.

Time(less) implies that something has an eternal value, and it means that there is no time, after all without time. Time is a constant presence; a 4th dimension in the now. Time and space are a unity. By taking photos, you capture the moment, becoming aware of the temporary.Not being bound to time is a rarity, ignoring the time seems impossible. The clock time that dominates our daily life leaves little room for boredom, awareness and reflection. We understand time as a fixed order that takes place according to the space of the solstice and in which nobody can withdraw. However, time is not static. With the ancient Greeks, the time had two faces; Chronos and Kairos. Measurable time versus emotional time. A scientific approach to tome provides insight into how malleable those fixed values are. The experience of time, on the other hand, seems by definition not to be form-retaining or measurable.

Forum, building 102
Wageningen University & Research 
Droevendaalsesteeg 2 Wageningen 

credit: Art Forever

self-made chalk colored with algae

chalk made of red algae

making algae chalk

the first results

work in progress. This picture is taken by a visitor.

blue algae chalk. This chalk has become almost completely white by the end of the project.


detail with chalk of yellow algae, which has become mouldy


detail with red algae chalk. This turns out to be a more stable pigment than the other colours.

detail with blue algae chalk. It comes from the start-up Algreen that is researching blue dyes from algae for the food industry. This dye comes from Spirulina, an originally green algae.