The Doppelgänger Series – Mourning Mirrors For What Is Being Lost
The project The Doppelgänger Series – Mourning Mirrors For What Is Being Lost consists of photographs from nature reserves, collaborations with artificial intelligence (AI), holograms and videos. The artist Susanne Fagerlund photographs in forests, collecting what is at risk of extinction and freezing it forever in images. Grief and the loss of biodiversity are an important part of this series, where the archive of her images undergoes photographic cryonics with the help of AI. She enlightens the current climate crisis and questions our relationship with nature in an attempt to digitally recreate disappearing biotopes.
She started her project in 2020 when she read an article in the scientific journal Nature about increased clearcutting of old-growth forests in Europe. They are essential biotopes for many plants and animals, and clear-cutting them instigates diminishing biodiversity and increases carbon dioxide emissions.
The process is vital to the project where the artist visits nature preserves – photographing, hiking, and experiencing the immersive feeling of forests. Afterwards, she collects her photographs into an archive of images for AI to train from. Subsequently, AI mimics Fagerlund’s photographs and creates interpreted artificial landscape images. The result of the collaboration is a reminiscence of nature. In fiction and mythology, the presence of a “Doppelgänger” is often seen as a harbinger of future misfortune.
Everything from photographing to letting AI process her photo archive – is an act of mourning what is being lost.
Susanne Fagerlund is based in Sweden and received her master’s degree in fine art at Valand Academy in 2021. Being a camera-based artist, Fagerlund explores the extended complexities and boundaries of the medium. Her installations oscillate between photography, video and digital technologies. As an artist, she works project-based, but human and non-human relationships are always the underlying current. Previous exhibitions include the Hasselblad Center (SE), Copenhagen Photo Festival (DK), More and Romsdal Art Center (NO) and Gothenburg Museum of Natural History (SE).