Friz Atacama

Spacesuit, Earthsuit: art and adaptation on the Salar de Atacama Artist talk by Anna Friz

Artboard 1

Sunday, January 28, 2024,
3pm - 4pm

Included with MAH admission

Register here

Blending documentary with science fiction, Anna Friz creates transmission and media art works that consider the salt flats of the Atacama Desert in northern Chile through the rubrics of geological history, physical changes of state such as evaporation, historical and contemporary mining industry, and the interplay between off-world futures and this-worldly possibility.

The extractivist logic that has historically developed vast, exploitative mining operations in Atacama (most notably saltpeter, copper, and lithium) continues to radically reshape the desert for eons to come. This area includes the “Valle de la luna” (Valley of the Moon) and “Valle de marte” (Valley of Mars), so named because of their lunar or off-worldly landscape and geology. The mining techniques currently being developed in Atacama are also imagined for eventual off-planet mining, driving imminent plans for future space imperialism and extra-terrestrial operations envisioned by today's billionaires on the moon or on Mars. Anna will discuss her works-in-progress from ongoing research in the Atacama desert, where artistic research and practice enable other approaches to temporality, land and place, suggesting not only other futures but a broader expression of the present.

About the Artist

Anna Friz creates media art, sound and transmission art, working across platforms to present installations, broadcasts, films and performances. Her works reflect upon media ecologies, land use and infrastructures, time perception, and critical fictions. Presentations of her work in the recent years include Ars Electronica Festival (Linz, Austria), the Museum of Arts and Design (New York), the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History (Washington DC), the New York Times Magazine, ESC Media Kunst Labor (Graz, Austria), ReWire Festival (The Hague, Netherlands), Soundhouse at the Barbican (London UK), Tsonami Festival de Arte Sonoro (Valparaíso, Chile), and RE:SOUND Festival (Aalborg, Denmark). Her radio art works have been heard around the world on public and independent airwaves, and commissioned by national public radio in Austria, Australia, Canada, Finland, Germany, and Mexico. Anna Friz is a 2022 Rydell Visual Arts Fellow, and a 2023 John R. Guggenheim Fellow. She is currently Associate Professor in the Film and Digital Media Department at University of California, Santa Cruz.