Homobranchia

Commission for Artemar 2021, Fundação D. Luís I, Cascais  (May - September 2021)

Curated by Luísa Soares de Oliveira 

Homo branchia is based on an illustration that can be found in "Elements of Comparative Zoology" (1897), by the biologist and zoologist John Sterling Kingsley. This illustration suggests the presence of gills in a human embryo, proofing our descance from water animals.

Close to where this work was installed in Cascais, there is a tide gauge that was installed in 1877. Being one of the oldest tide gauges of its kind still functioning today, it is an important proof of the rise of the sea level in that particular area.

By juxtaposing these two references two ideas are confronted: one is our metaphysical relation to water and its wellbeing benefits. The other is what our relation to water might be imposed to us in the future: some studies demonstrate that this area of the Tagus estuary will be submerged in the next 100 years.

If the evolution process that brought us from the water to land took millions of years, how quickly will we have to adapt to it again?