Embers and the Giants will see its first gallery installation and UK premiere during the York Mediale 2020!

21 October, 20 – 9 May, 21
York Art Gallery, York, UK

A triptych of installations under the banner of ‘Human Nature’, jointly curated by York Mediale and York Museums Trust, come together to form the centrepiece of York Mediale 2020. ‘Embers and the Giants’ by Kelly Richardson, ‘The Tides Within Us’ by Marshmallow Laser Feast and ‘Limina’ by Rachel Goodyear form ‘Human Nature’, an exhibition exploring notions of separation between humans, our environment and technology. With quiet contemplation, we take a journey into the ecosystem of our own lives and experiences. Revealing how our bodies are hardwired, synchronised and inextricably linked to nature.

This important exhibition resonates now more than ever as we navigate the health and climate change emergencies that define life in 2020.

Kelly Richardson’s video installation Embers and the Giants presents an endangered old-growth forest during last light, articulated by thousands of floating embers of light. Initial impressions may be that we are witness to a rare and exceptionally beautiful display of fireflies or the embers from a forest fire out of frame. The longer viewers look, the more evident it becomes that we are not witnessing a natural spectacle. We are witnessing human intervention through thousands of tiny drones mimicking a natural spectacle, suggesting a time when we will need to amplify the spectacle of nature in order to convince the public of its worth.

Embers and the Giants questions our calls for preservation at a time when large-scale environmental breakdown caused by climate change is not a case of if but when.


York Mediale 2020 with present six major new commissions, including five world premieres and one UK premiere.

Starting on October 21st and continuing into the new year through May 9th, YM2020 is a cacophony of experiential digital art conceived for and influenced by 2020. We want to help kick start the cultural heart of York and the UK with a world premiere loaded, digitally engaged, mentally stimulating, adrenaline shot of a festival.

YM2020 looks to explore, challenge and reflect on what connects us. At a time of social distancing, a climate emergency and political upheaval, we are shining a light on how we connect with our loved ones, our community, the natural environment and culture.