Ondertussen: Evelina Rajca

12 November 2018 - 6 January 2019
Location: Hogewal 1-9, The Hague
Open: Monday - Friday: 11-17 hrs; Saturday and Sunday: 12-17 hrs
Closed: 17 November, 24, 25, 31 December and 1 January (between Christmas and New Year only open from Wednesday thru Sunday, 12-17 hrs)

In 2016 Evelina Rajca started the research project Speculative Ecologies and Intelligent Energy Harvesting Entities, around her long term artistic fascination for the manipulation of circadian rhythms and self-regulation of the human body. The project addressed notions of self-regulation and "adequate sleep", questioned the ambiguity and certainty of these concepts and tried to unfold their ephemeral and normative layers.

The artistic research focused especially on bio- and geopolitical perspectives. Rajca worked with documents and data from various archives dedicated to the impact of high energy consumption on our nature, such as the Earth Observatory data from ESA, and sleep research from the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine (USA).

In addition to archival research, Rajca examined various sensors that monitor and harvest energy within human and non-human bodies. She experimented with very specific energy harvesting sensors out of piezo-electric minerals. This culminated in experimental algorithmic compositions and multisensory installations. At the Bauhaus University in Weimar and the VISIT Artist in Residence Program in Essen (D) Rajca focused her research on the worldwide conflict over minerals needed for both smart technologies and their power supply.

In Ondertussen, Evelina Rajca shares recent artifacts that were realized within the context of this long term research. One of the artefacts displayed is part of her recent work Smart.ing Bodies, which consists of sound instruments based on quartz minerals and piezo-electric properties. Rajca collected quartz sand from various disappearing beaches around the world, and burned the purified minerals into specific glass shapes. These glassy bodies can be tuned according to the principle of traditional bells and singing bowls. Another core material that she used consists of partly self-cultivated crystals, which generate a small amount of electricity through pressure. A drumstick, with a piezo-electric sensor inside, is striking the glass bells while they rotate around their own axes. The small electrical charge (produced through the sensor inside the drumstick) is processed within an algorithmic composition and modulates the frequencies and the instrument's (in)activity. Thus, the glass bodies become "self-regulating" devices, sounding wide spectrums of frequencies. In order to avoid a "resonance disaster" (the destruction of the resonating materials), the algorithmic program needed to "learn" to counter the forces.

In 2016 Evelina Rajca received a PRO Research grant for her project Speculative Ecologies and Intelligent Energy Harvesting Entities.

Within the upcoming months Rajca will further develop her artistic research, now focusing on self-regulating systems and associative learning strategies in human and non-human bodies, with the usage of artificial intelligence. In 2018 she received a PRO Research grant for this research trajectory, which is co-funded with an e-culture stipend by the Creative Industries Fund NL.


The Ondertussen space links Stroom's exhibition program to its enabling policy for artists. This policy aims to strengthen and improve the visibility of The Hague's artistic climate. Presentations in Ondertussen are usually the result of subsidies provided by Stroom, but can also show the results of mediation by Stroom or of other stimulating activities. The presentations are intended to illustrate the diversity of the grant applications and the positive effect of our enabling policy for artists. The presentations can vary from (interim) reports of (research) projects and residencies to network presentations. The Ondertussen presentation is the responsibility of the applicant.

Archive Ondertussen presentations

Evelina Rajca, Glass Bells
photo: courtesy the artist
Evelina Rajca, Piezo Electric Ceramics
photo: courtesy the artist
Evelina Rajca, video still from experimental documentary
photo: courtesy the artist