Toxic Temple is an invitation to reflect on the darker aspects of our ecological conundrum in a novel and unexpected way. By establishing a speculative religious cult of waste and pollution, we try to cultivate and make thinkable new perspectives and paradigms of action in this very dire time.
Contrary to a naïve "conservation" environmentalism with the one-sided goal of keeping so-called "nature" clean, in Toxic Temple we assume that only by cultivating our dirty, polluting and toxic practices can our society develop a mature approach to the hyper-complex ecological problems of the present. To this end, we examine the machines and modern consumer products apart from their brief appearance on the stages of global capitalism: from the geological emergence of their basic resources, their extraction and exploitation, to the recycling yards and rubbish dumps as harbingers of the "Anthropocene" layer.
Plastic, electronic waste, cement, steel, aluminum as well as nuclear waste will in all likelihood outlive humanity. From this point of view, they can be understood as messages to the afterlife. By at the same time humorously and seriously venerating “those that will outlast us”, we are stimulating a sober and serious reflection about our entanglement in modern toxic life-styles and the auto-poetic language of assemblages as not-, or not-only-human agency. Whereas the ecological catastrophe is usually discussed in abstract numerical regimes, we make the sensuality of our eco-catastrophe accessible and palpable by means of a transcendent motif. By feeling after the toxic frenzy in religious ecstasy, we make the ecological condition a fully sensual & engaging experience that to some is funny and entertaining, to others shocking and frightening.