Christine Henry

From the Beginning to the Anthropocene, 2022


A squadron of birds fly over the exhibition space. Above them is not the vast sky but the restricting lines and angles of manmade structures. Against this unmoving background, the birds appear trapped and robbed of life. Upon closer look they reveal bodies made of coconut tree bark, iron legs and claws, and heads covered by plastic tanks that turn them into grotesque creatures. With the combination of raw material and man-made products, Christine Henry gazes into the past, into the origin of life on earth, when creatures emerged from water, half-fish, half-bird, as well as into the present and the future, when the human’s total blindness of the way they produce, consume and throw away their waste has become the biggest cause of mass extinction of fauna and flora. The installation sets human excessive use and exploitation of raw material into contrast and relation with plastic, a man-made and non-biodegradable material which is aggravating pollution worldwide. It is necessary to understand the reasons for the great mass extinctions and to invite the visitor to meditate on the transience and precariousness of the environment, in order to take action on the real issues of life.


Christine Henry (*1958 Porto, Portugal), lives and works at Algarve, Portugal.