Fake Newsstand Domas van Wijk


Fake Newsstand is a work of art that Domas van Wijk developed for the IJssel Biennale. The work focuses on themes such as salinization and fake news. At first glance, the work resembles a traditional newsstand, but a closer look reveals that the newsstand consists of a large aquarium with crystallized newspapers in it.

Works of art that are effected by processes are central to Van Wijk's practice. Fake Newsstand is a work that is effected by processes on several levels. During the first weeks of the presentation of the work, the aquarium was filled with water that was maximally filled with salt. Due to the large amount of salt, the water reached a maximum point of absorption. During evaporation, this resulted in the water taking a solid shape and the forming of salt crystals. We see this same rapid process every year: because of the ever warmer and drier summers, groundwater evaporates and the landscape gets salinized, which has major consequences for both nature and agriculture.

Fake Newsstand also takes a critical look at the changeable form and objectivity of news. With the advent of the internet and a distrust of news media - resulting in conspiracy theories -, fact and fiction get mixed up. The crystallization of newspapers brings the newspaper medium to a standstill; culture conquered (back) by nature.

The work offers a poetic and layered perspective on both the impact of climate change and the transformation process of news. Like in his other works, Van Wijk knows how to fuse together two completely different subjects, transition processes in news and climate, through the use of another process, namely salinization. It is to no surprise that the quote “the medium is the message [and the message is the medium]” by Marshall McLuhan (1967) has similarities with the work of Domas van Wijk.

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