World Wide Paper Heart / Bayamón-Helsinki 2002

Puerto Rico ‘02 [en ruta] 6–13.10. 2002

Andersson was invited by curator Paula Toppila to take part in PR’02 (en ruta), an international exhibition arranged by M&M proyectos in Puerto Rico, with contemporary art interacting with the society. The artists chosen by Toppila made their projects in Bayamón, an industrial city, closely connected with the capitol of Puerto Rico, San Juan. The exhibition took place during a hectic week from 6-12.10.2002. The projects curated by Toppila all happened during Saturday 11.10.

Andersson made a culinary link, using Internet, between a shopping center in Bayamón and the café in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki, Kiasma. The project, called WWPH, World Wide Paper Heart, is a new version of the World Wide Chocolate Heart projects, where people exchanged pictures between cities. The pictures were printed with food colour on chocolate hearts and eaten. For this exhibition Andersson had transformed two normal inkjet printers to use food colour and to print on 2mm rice paper.

The project combines the possibility of virtually connecting people from different part of the world through Internet with the physical activity of eating.
The participants on both sites sit in front of a computer with a web camera. Through a specially designed interface they can take snapshots of them selves or of other things placed in front of the web camera. The pictures is sent to the other site and printed on edible paper with a printer using food colour.
The pictures, together with a short text written at the same time as the picture is taken, also go to a web site for the project, where you can look at all the participants also after the actual performance is over.
The project relies on the activity of the people attending the performance. The communicative “feeling” which is created when people gather around the computer, looks what kind of picture the other people around the computer are sending, is at its best, very inspiring.
The highpoint of the project happens when a picture (of a person) arrives from the other side of the world and is being visualized on a piece of edible paper. The participants react differently: Some eat the paper with the picture and laugh, other eat slowly with contemplation, more like a version of the communion. Others find the picture of the other human being almost sacred and save the piece of paper, perhaps to be eaten sometimes later.