The fascination with bees has been a driving force for numerous modern day scientists, researchers as well as many past civilizations. Aganetha Dyck’s current research is based on interspecies communication between humans and honeybees to understand the delicate and fragile nature that exists between these two species. Working in a collaborative process with the insects, she creates sculptural and visual representations of this communication in a way that neither party could have created individually.
Aganetha Dyck is a Canadian artist who is interested in environmental issues, specifically the power of the small. She is interested in inter species communication. Her research asks questions about the ramifications all living beings would experience should honeybees disappear from earth.
First, a clarification; I am not a beekeeper. I rent the colonies of honeybees, bee hives, and apiary space from a qualified beekeeper. All my work with honeybees is overseen by a scientist and is always completed under the direction of a beekeeper. The beekeeper takes care of the bees. I am an artist interested in environmental issues and in inter-species communication, specifically interested in the power of the small. My ongoing research asks questions regarding the ramifications all living beings would experience should honey bees disappear from earth.
Communication and collaboration with the honeybees begins with the acknowledgment and understanding of their ways of existing and their methods of working.
To begin a collaborative project with the honeybees, I choose a slightly broken object or damaged material from a second hand market place. I choose damaged objects because honeybees are meticulous beings, they continuously mend anything around them and they do pay attention to detail. To encourage the honeybees to communicate, I strategically add wax or honey, propolis or hand-made honeycomb patterns to the objects prior to placing them into their hives. At least I like to think my methods are strategic. The honeybees often think otherwise and respond to what is placed within their hive in ways that make my mind reel.
At times, the honeybees encourage me to add or delete honeycomb after they have worked on an object. As an example, by overextending their honeycomb, the honeybees encourage me to sculpt into this mass of waxed cell construction and return it to them for further consideration.