Esmee Geerken (NL)

Esmee Geerken is a Dutch artist and Earth scientist, with a main expertise in biomineralization and paleoceanography. After defending her dissertation entitled Elements in foraminiferal shells as recorders of past climates in December 2019, Esmee now combines her interdisciplinairy background in an artistic practice influenced by geology, chemistry and philosophy. Her work playfully questions our perception of the obvious – the curvature of the Earth, and the peculiar – how organisms (like us) build their shells.

Esmee is specifically interested in building as a way to enact the environment, at multiple spatial scales. In her current project Building as Being, Esmee is in search of the sweet spot between order and chaos, by means of ordering elements into (complex) shapes. From the microscopic realm of crystals precipitating from solutions to growing urban ecologies. How are these blobs of order –crystals, bodies, identities, minds, stories, cities, ‘precipitating’ from their environments? How to enhance and constrain the permeability of boundaries – membranes, shells, skins and houses, that create insides within outsides?