George Enescu 43, Bucharest, Romania
RafinX is an ongoing artistic research, started by Cristian Ghiță during his bachelor studies (2016-2017) which follows the posthumanist premises of the individual’s repositioning towards technique and nature. More precisely, started as a photographic documentation and continued as a series of objects and installations, the current research addresses one of the topics of acute recent interest, namely the situation of the abandoned industrial landmarks of the communist era.
The project opens several directions for analysis: the disuse and abandonment situation, the destruction of the identity of highly industrialized cities, and the question of human intrusion into the natural space. Nature’s willpower shouldn’t be neglected, as she is capable of retrieving the decrepit technological perimeter, of gradually reclaiming any human construction, regardless of size, force or purpose. The ephemeral nature of the human condition pushes the analysis in the direction of questioning the validity of modern anthropocentrism, in order to establish posthuman ethics and aesthetics.
The industrial site chosen by the artist is the Astra Refinery, located near the town of Ploiești, one of the most important Romanian industrial centres. This choice is not accidental. We know that our identity is intimately related to the places where we spend parts of our lives in, or that, in Heideggerian terms, we inhabit. In this sense, the personal side of this location (in which the artist’s grandfather and mother worked, where Cristian Ghiță went to the nursery and where he also made the last photographic documentation of the location before the destruction) has an important relevance.
In addition, this industrial landscape is an ultimate sample of the Romanian socialist era, once able to dominate the horizon, while also being a mediation between human and nature, between technological and biological. It is only a trace of the past, for which no one has time or interest nowadays. The current approach, along with the creation of a documentary archive, aims to provide an alternative to the indifference with which the contemporary individual witnesses the dissolution of the recent history.