Geo-Fantasies: A Space Race on Planet Earth
An exhibition by Andrea Molina Cuadro, Co-curated with Reem M. Yassin

On View: April 19 - June 16, 2024
Opening reception: April 19, 6 - 8pm

In comparison with land and later the oceans, both the air and subsoil have historically offered a stronger resistance to processes of observation, appropriation, exploitation, and control. However, in the context of global warming today, international protocols and technoscientific innovations are attempting to territorialize aerial and underground realms. The Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) industry promises to re-capture all anthropogenic carbon emissions, by sequestering them underground. Paradoxically, under the rubric of “environmental stewardship”, air is becoming yet another territory for industrialization. Carbon today not only circulates through infrastructures where it continues to be emitted, mined, extracted, and burnt – but also through a complex network of operations where it is captured, transported, sequestered, traded, and re-instrumentalized.

Geo-Fantasies interrogates the Carbon Capture and Sequestration industry by revealing the complex economies that it fuels. In order to track the CCS operations, this exhibition travels to one of the main territories where carbon capture infrastructure is emerging today. In the Western lands of Wyoming and Montana, a network of carbon dioxide pipelines owned by Anadarko Petroleum, ExxonMobil, and Denbury Resources is transporting CO2 from natural gas refineries in Shute Creek and Lost Cabin, Wyoming, to a sequestration point in Bell Creek, Montana, creating one of the seven large-scale commercial carbon sequestration complexes in the US to date.

Through a series of photographs, cartographies, drawings, legal and archival documents, a two-channel video piece, and a “Pore Space” installation, the exhibition illuminates the legal, financial, and spatial entanglements with the fossil fuel industry – offering a space to interrogate the socio-political, cultural, and environmental ramifications that engineering a human-made, accelerated carbon cycle entails.

From April 19th to June 16th, 2024, the project will be exhibited at Citygroup on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, accompanied by a program that gathers architects, artists, activists, environmentalists, and the general public to address these questions. The series of conversations and workshops will speculate on potential and alternative carbon capture futures, considering different degrees of refusal, reappropriation, cooperation, and cohabitation with these technologies.

Organizers: Andrea Molina Cuadro, and Reem M. Yassin.
Support: Geo Fantasies is made possible thanks to the generous grant extended by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, and the Consulate General of Spain in New York.
Credits: Tianyu Yang for Video Editing, and with the inestimable help of Cameron Holman.

Images by Em Joseph