What is Genetology?
the science of first things
• noun the part of theology and philosophy concerned with birth, origin, and destiny. First used in English around 1864.
— DERIVATIVES genetological adjective genetologist noun.
— ORIGIN from Latin genus (genetive generis) ‘origin’.
the science of last things
• noun the part of theology and philosophy concerned with death, judgement, and destiny. First used in English around 1550.
— DERIVATIVES eschatological adjective eschatologist noun.
— ORIGIN from Greek eskhatos ‘last’.
Genetology or science of first things is a self invented science first used by J. Bertani in his publication Genetology, or, The reproduction of human beauty & excellence, considered (1864), creating an opposition for the existing dominant science of last things, Eschatology. Genetology’s main area of research is our fascination with time and its consequences: How will we look back to the past in the future? What will be left over from the present? What is ‘new’ or ‘first’ in the future?
This quest brings me as close to science as well as art, like ‘The origin of Life Remake’ of Stanley Miller and Harold Urey in 1953, where they tried to recreate life with the same basic ingredients present 3,5 billion years ago, or the discovery of the ‘Interplanetary Super Highway’, fluctuating energy lanes, during the recent ‘Genesis’ mission making it possible to travel much faster through space without additional fuel or external impulse. The cosmological stepmother of the black holes.
The sheep on formadehyde solution of Damien Hirst (‘Away from the Flock’), the modern archaeology of Mark Dion (‘New England Digs’), the peeled of trees of Guiseppe Penone (‘Tree Door’) or ‘I Like America And America Likes Me’, the performance of Joseph Beuys of 1974 in which he lived in a cage for five days in the Rene Black Galley in New York together with a wild coyote: one by one works that feel the pulse of time and balance between the temporary and the timeless.
In the scientific world Genetology is currently used to discribe the fusion between Genetics and Genealogy. Or, how can we manipulate the DNA of our future generations? How can we (re)write history?
This website functions as an online sketchbook on which I put my own work in the context of other artworks, events in history, scientific discoveries, intellectual discourse and philosophical explorations. Slowly I’m trying to define and understand Genetology. In 2009 I started with a large publication about my Genetologic Research, focussing on a different existing science in every quire and putting it in relation to Genetology. For every new page that is published, a text is written by a different author, relating to the topic’.
Maarten Vanden Eynde (www.maartenvandeneynde.com)