Oliver Hull at scatalogicalritesofallnations / London

Oliver Hull / Green River

07.12. 2023

Finsbury Square

Green River an exhibition by Oliver Hull at scatalogicalritesofallnations is a site specific work that reorientates Olafur Eliasson’s work of the same name into the toilet. Beginning in 1998 upon Eliasson’s discovery of the non toxic green dye Fluorescein, Green River consisted of a series of staged interventions across a number of major cities’ rivers. In these interventions, Eliasson dyes the river a bright lurid green, creating a large-scale perceptual shift. Fluorescein is  a diagnostic contrast agent, used as both an ecological tracer to map water flow around the globe,  and more mundanely by plumbers to track leakage or waste in domestic toilets and sinks. Eliasson says of his work,

“Each time I have made Green river, I have been struck by the power of the simple change in colour. The vivid green of the non-toxic dye makes the water explicit as it flows past on its way to the ocean, where it disperses and is carried around the globe.”

Going on to speak to the conceptual ramifications of the work, Eliasson states, “I hope that Green River acknowledges our entanglement in all the constantly changing, yet overlooked, agencies that make up our natural-cultural environment”.

Hull’s work re-stages Eliasson’s experiments with Fluorescein in scatalogicalritesofallnations, a gallery whose main feature is a dank downtown London toilet. Already this recontextualisation speaks volumes as to Hulls intentions: Where Eliasson speaks euphemistically about a global entanglement that stretches across species,space and time, Hull’s work instead fixates on the monstrous underpinnings of global capital and techno utopianism figured through a preoccupation with waste and the hybrid form.

– Samuel Jackson