Linde Ex, Dana Olărescu & Oscar van Heek


In 2022, Art Walk Projects invited three artists to collaborate on a project that would link three saltmarsh locations: in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria; East Lothian, Scotland; and The Wadden Sea, Netherlands. Taking the form of a relay, the three artists each took time to explore and research their local saltmarsh ecosystem before travelling to the other two locations to make connections across the three locations. During 2023 a series of community engagement works are programmed for Portobello, Edinburgh, with a touring exhibition involving the three saltmarsh habitats planned for 2024.

The project centres on artistic responses to the climate emergency. Each saltmarsh location is home to vital ecosystems which play integral parts in tidal wetland systems and in sequestering global marine carbon. The three artists are responding to each of these sites individually and collectively through a process of collaboration and partnership with the three organisations. 

Based around an initial travelling residency, with each artist spending time in the other locations, a project is evolving that draws upon ways to engage with the climate emergency specific to each coast. As a whole, DELUGE considers the place and value of contemporary practice to further critical debate within the field of climate arts. 

The three artists have commenced their residencies in 2022 with each artist visiting the other two locations in a relay-style method, visiting and meeting with each pairing organisation. A series of public engagement events took place as part of the 2023 Art Walk Porty Vessel programme, as well as at Art Gene in Barrow. Works from each of the artists are planned for 2024 and 2025.

With thanks to Art Gene (Barrow-in-Furness) and University of Groningen in enabling this project to take place.

Oscar van Heek

Above image: Oscar van Heek 2022

About the artists

Linde Ex is an artist, artistic researcher and teacher. She lives and works in Groningen, the Netherlands. Linde is interested in other-than- human perspectives in an ecological context. Her work process can be described as a series of attempts to explore and create connections and understandings between humans and more-than-human-others. Linde works from a broad research approach. She often works together with other art disciplines and scientists who stimulate her to consider other perspectives. 

Dana Olărescu is a socially engaged artist with a focus on challenging minority exclusion and environmental injustice. Through participatory methodologies that democratise access to art and knowledge, she aims to give agency to underserved migrant groups so they can become active co-producers of culture. 

Oscar van Heek is an Edinburgh-based film-maker and fine art photographer. Recent projects include Dark Water, an experimental collaboration with Scottish Opera that draws upon computer art subcultures, and The Iron Harvest, a video installation and series of prints detailing the detonation of live World War One ammunition on the former battle grounds of Ypres, exhibited at Somerset House, London (2019) and Sonica, Glasgow (2022). 

Linde Ex 2023 – Barrow-in-Furness, Edinburgh, Waddensea

Dana Olarescu leading walking workshop at Aberlady Saltmarsh, with contributions from Helena Simmons (Green Shores)

Artist Camille Aboudaram leading walking workshop session around billboard sites of Portobello 2023 (in association with Dana Olarescu)

Curator Anna-Rosja Haveman (University of Groningen) talk at Art Walk Hub 2023

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