Johanna Bruckner

Along Tissue, a Leap, Passing, Voice


Metabolic Hardware

With words by Samuel Ace, Johanna Bruckner, NM ESC, Aeon Ginsberg, and Rita Wong.


Cesano is a small town located in the volcanic region

of the Sibillini mountains, near Rome.

In 1975 Enel discovered a geothermal fluid in the roots of this land

that is particularly interesting for two characteristics:

high temperature,

therefore useful to produce energy,

and high salinity rate with the presence of lithium.

Fluids like these have not been extracted

because historically geothermal energy

has always been seen only as a source of energy, 

Andrea Dini, CNR researcher and expert in mineral deposits, explains.

Geothermal plants where the water was very rich in salts

were generally discarded

because the high salinity gave problems to the plants

and the separation systems.


We are bodies of salty fluids,

with hands that shook arms, legs, toes and breath,

with nerves all plugged up,

muddied by salt in every synapse,

as seeping bodies

with a salty, metal cunt

anaesthetised, amputated, torn,

barely walking


bodies dismembered:

dormant bodies

reciting their legal rights.


all that salt from their stream.


We are bodies of vast archives of toxic substances,

political, social, and medical conflicts,

We are xenobiotic substances,

chemical compounds,

and have deviant agencies

which are discharged into the lakes, rivers, and seas,

and alter the metabolism of human and more than human bodies.

Alien agencies like synthetic chemicals transit through our vulnerable bodies,

becoming a toxic agent.

Synthetic forms of human hubris

display an agentic capacity due to their active powers.


I want to know about my own body.

A pigs` inside looks the same as human.

I’ve had pigs my entire life.

I don’t know about my body.


In the fresh morning

hexavalent chromium

I dip my hands into you


tentatively thankful to camp on your shores


amidst mosquitoes, mud & grass


knowing you hold airborne toxins


from the tar sands


Atrazine in your armpits,

Pcbs in your pelvic core,

Furans in your feet,

Dioxins in your diaphragm.

Changing animal and human hormone levels.


Itchy lymph

fluids that come from

swallowed water

that come from

a river that come from a lake

that come from a glacier

receding from industrial glare

how long will it take to learn?

Convenience not worth cancer’s long soft leak.

Life on Earth is a hypersea,

composed of webs of physical intimacy and fluid exchange.

We receive multiple gifts from the clouds,

rain replenishes as withdrawals accelerate.


We are bodies of distributed reproduction

born on the concept of “reproductive justice,”

as crafted by women-of-color feminists in the United States;

and the Comilla Declaration of 1989, written in Bangladesh,

which describes the engineering of life in both agriculture and in human bodies

as connected forms of the relations of reproduction.

We are not an embodied, forward-moving, generative process;

but born of a chemical infrastructure

the spatial and temporal distributions of industrially produced chemicals

as they are produced and consumed,

and as they become mobile in the atmosphere, settle into landscapes,

travel in water ways, leach from commodities, are regulated (or not) by states,

monitored by experts, engineered by industries, absorbed by bodies,

metabolized physiologically and medically, and as they bioaccumulate in food changes,

break down over time, or persist.


Algorithms and its instruments enter the ecosystem

and enhance the production of new microbial life.

The ecosystem reproduces from inside and through itself,

from below and beyond the binary.

As a reproductive justice,

as assisted reproduction,

forms of reproduction beyond the extraction of organic data

into the technologizations of life,

beyond the creation of new markets,

as distributed reproduction as redistributed reproduction.


The submerged chemicals of the past finally arrive in the present

to disrupt the reproduction of the same.

Through latency, the future is already altered.

To be latent is to be not yet, a past not yet felt.


We, the marinobacter bodies,

bodies that come into being

through nonbinary sexual acts and touch

are able to break down harmful chemicals

into non-toxic compounds.

PCBs produce new human-non-human linkages,

binding us to each other,

to our environment and to the chemical infrastructure.

Our bodies are now molecularly bound to the chemical’s manufacturer,

Bound to todays giant pleasure machines, and industries,

the latex industries AI sex robotic told and toys,

to the pornographic industries.

Our chemical kinship is born out of this intertwined deadly relation

bringing us into a ‘filial relation’ between the chemical giant and the pleasure apparatus.

This familial relation gives us the right to insist

that the company recognizes its obligations

and takes responsibility for its role in altering our bodies and our world.

Toxins have entered our system, and

we, Petrolinium bodies,

have become molecularly altered by them.

When we breathe in PCBs we are not just breathing in a molecule,

we are breathing in the chemical and pleasure infrastructure that produces and circulates them.


Bioremediation is the creation of interfaces connecting machines and biological systems,

information channels between our machines and our brains,

technological systems hacking biological devices.

One interface system will allow to hack human

nervous systems and, therefore to modify our minds.

The current state of the neuroscience research in neuronal microcircuits provides

the background to build the model of neural circuits on the level of

individual neurons and their connections,

considering morphological variation

and complex topology of the neuronal circuits.

The neurocomputational models are wearable or implantable.

For neurons at various sites of the nervous system,

a typical property is oscillatory activity.

Being expressed in fast and slow time scales, such activity can be chaotic.

One of the first significant results in neurodynamics, which are important to our days,

is the Hodgkin-Huxley model,

which describes the principles of generating an action potential in a neuron.

Neural coupling occurs due to the so-called synaptic connections,

which have a complex spatial architecture and provide a diverse nature of interneuronal interactions.

The plasticity effect is inherent in almost all neuronal cells.

Synaptic plasticity is considered as a mechanism of higher cognitive functions.

We are wearing sensory software,

we have incoporated it.

It allows us to hack into the pleasure gaze,

embedded in the internet decriminalization algorithmic anti-body violence, our work is focused on.


The perchlorate machine learning algorithm

stimulates trading metabolites.

By exchanging dedicated molecular signals,

each species among us

responds to the presence of others in the consortium.


The  Genetic Algorithm drives our ecosystem in a desired direction,

to design mixed microbial consortia by determining

which isolated and marginalized social strains to combine.

The perchlorate bioremediation with the Genetic Algorithm engineers us,

microbial communities as biofilms, as social bodies,

to give us the ability to degrade perchlorate.

Our breakdown of compounds, as a result,

the chemical’s undecidability, death, and new emergence,

opens a recirculation,

releasing elements back into widely disrupted cycles,

contributing to elemental excess and atmospheric more-than-toxication.

The released substances are put in recirculation,

as a more-than-human collective healing.

As pleasure bodies.

Our community embraces degradation and corruption of matter.

In sight of multicoloured muck,

biosolids enhance (soil) fertility.

As a way of making feel

for the troubles of soils and waters

in which we perform (for) the desires of metabolic hardware.