Anne Geene (NL, 1983) collected, studied and captured the water that surrounds us in all its aspects and appearances. She discovered the best place to live in the Netherlands when it comes to the cheapest drinking water; researched the microscopic life in it; how to photograph it; and even how to make miniature water. In fact, almost everything ranging from a molecule of water to the ocean. All observations and findings were bundled together in a handy pocket-sized almanac.
For many, photographs are still used to provide important evidence of observation. Photography is also a widely used tool in science, even enabling us to observe more than is visible to the naked eye. In Geene’s work, the relationship between science and the photographic image is central. She uses conventions from science. Visual strategies such as white backgrounds, rulers, arrows and charts, professing objectivity, truth, and completeness, are linked to highly personal observations.
For the exhibition Power of Water, she developed Anne Geene’s Little Water Almanac. An almanac is an annual publication that contains statistics; price lists; scientific and astrological data; miscellany, such as jokes and poetry; and recurring information on a given topic, partly organised according to the calendar. Geene’s almanac explores an everyday but opaque occurrence: our personal water usage.
Her starting point was the fact that the only thing we know about our tap water is that it is amongst the best drinking water in the world. Not bad. But what Geene really wanted to find out was: what else do we think we know about it? As humanity eagerly searches for facts about water, she precisely documents the confusing situation it can lead to.