Giorgia Burzio








Yttrium 

Research project, writing, mapping
3D visualisation (Rhinoceros, Blender), 3D scanning 

in collaboration with Susanne Sjöberg, PhD 



traces in the mine, Ytterby (north of Stockholm)



Yttrium, Terbium, Ytterbium, Erbium. Those four metals are

some of the so-called Rare Earths and today are essential to

lighten up our screens and make our smartphones vibrate.

They all have been discovered in the rocks of a small mine

called Ytterby, in the swedish island Resarö, in the Stockholm

archipelago. The beautiful quartz rock, overlooking the sea,

embeds a tangled network of materials and contaminations

that stretches through time and space. Inspired by Timothy

Morton’s concept of nature, and Jane Bennett’s vibrant matter,

I spent many hours on the site, mapping and interacting with

the rocks, where all those metals have been found and that now

have contaminated the groundwater, spreading throughout the

area. The water leaking from the rocks’ cracks has been slowly

generating a proliferation of bacteria on the rocks walls. Water

and minerals, contamination and life
. Today, in the Rare Earths

mines in Inner Mongolia, toxic water dumps are spreading in

massive lakes that seem never-ending by sight.


The outcomes of the reflection are the graphical material, maps, on-site drawings and a series of reflective objects, including a mirror and an acupuncture kit. The objects and a short video have been exhibited with the purpose of making noticeable the interconnectedness of things.









from exhibition at Konstfack, 2020 -- print on acrylic, silicon props