Dana Olărescu

Socially-engaged artist Dana Olărescu focuses on challenging minority exclusion and environmental injustice, aiming to give under-served groups the agency to become active co-producers of culture. Recent projects include ‘How to Say Goodbye to a Power Station’ commissioned by Keele University and Urban Wilderness. Her projects have been presented at institutions in the UK and abroad, including Tate Modern, the London Short Film Festival, Museum of London and the Low Carbon Design Institute.

Her latest project Power In for Sea Change 2023 is a collaboration between artist Dana Olărescu and Dr Julia Tomei, an Associate Professor at UCL who focuses on energy equity, justice, and the provision of modern energy services to the financially poor. Workshops were run with ‘English for Speakers of other Languages’ course students local to the Royal Docks who come from varied backgrounds. These looked at the energy access participants had in their native countries, as well as what is now available to them after the repercussions of the energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

To reflect on the root causes of energy-access inequality, the artist will create a temporary outdoor installation in the Thames Barrier Park, visible to passers-by as well as to those travelling on the DLR through Pontoon Dock station. Made up of windsocks – simple indicators of wind direction and strength – the installation will use low technology to display fragments of workshop conversations, collective energy-access concerns, and academic research.

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