The Sibarist

About Water by Ulf Saupe, with the special collaboration of ECOALF

ART U READY 2019: planet ocean

From 12 to 14 September 2019

As part of APERTURA 2019, an event in which 49 art galleries in Madrid inaugurate their season at the same time, ART U READY joins its neighbouring galleries, Elba Benítez, Heinrich Erdhart, La Cometa, Carlier Gebauer and Travesía Cuatro, to present About Water, an exhibition by the German artist Ulf Saupe, with the special collaboration of the sustainable fashion firm ECOALF.

29 July 2019. The planet is in the red. It has entered an ecological deficit. This is the ‘Overshoot day’ or ‘Overshoot day’. This date marks the moment when humanity has consumed all the natural resources that the Earth is capable of regenerating in a year. At present, it is estimated that we consume the earth’s riches up to 1.75 times faster: water, food, wood, fossil fuels, carbon emissions…

Water is a major threatened resource. Globally, in the last 50 years, groundwater extraction has tripled worldwide. Between 2011 and 2050, the world’s population is expected to grow from 7 to 9 billion, according to the United Nations population report, a factor that will determine the future demand for water.

To feed this entire population, food production will have to grow by 70%. Everything we eat or drink requires water for its manufacture. In fact, 92% of the water consumed daily is used to produce food.

Paper, plastics, clothes, cars and the vast majority of objects around us are water consumers.

(Water Footprint Network data).

In turn, plastic has flooded our daily lives: we can find it in product packaging, cosmetic ingredients, clothing fabrics, construction materials…

The global situation is dramatic, all the more so given that plastic production will approach 500 million tonnes by 2020 (900% more than in 1980). These quantities, their easy dispersion and slow degradation process make plastic the number one enemy of the seas and oceans. Its use is a problem associated with consumption patterns, as most of it is used for single-use packaging. Spain is the fifth largest producer in the EU.

Surface plastics are only the tip of the iceberg, representing less than 15% of all plastics in the sea.

Reducing the use and impact of plastics on ecosystems is everyone’s responsibility, both public administrations and citizens. Its effects, although they may seem imperceptible to us, are devastating, spreading from the Arctic to the Antarctic, wreaking havoc on marine species.

The use of plastic is unsustainable and is a clear example of the impacts of the throwaway culture. It is therefore necessary to go to the source of the problem and, firstly, reduce the amount of plastic that is put into circulation and then focus on reuse. There is already a growing movement of people around the world who are committing to a lifestyle free of single-use plastics.

(Greenpeace data).

Res Navalis. Ulf Saupe.

“Water always finds its way, even transforming even the hardest of stones, just as the truth, with time, cannot be hidden, and finally finds its way to the surface. So drop by drop the glass fills up until one last one fills it, and it is vital to join synergies to prevent the avoidable and fight together for a necessary change”. Ulf Saupe

About Water goes beyond the conventional boundaries that show experimental photography on white walls. It is a joint adventure of people concerned about the future of our planet with a focus on sustainability, aiming to raise awareness about more efficient resource management.

ART U READY makes a call to action with this proposal that shows a current problem of our society and for this purpose unites the talent of an artist aware of sustainability and water, Ulf Saupe and ECOALF, visionaries of Spanish sustainable fashion that make the cleanliness of the oceans their maxim, transforming marine debris into design, quality and beauty, who join the action with an installation from plastic bottles and a limited edition of T-shirts with signed works of the artist that can be purchased during the exhibition while stocks last, donating a percentage of them to the Ecoalf Foundation, for its project UPCYCLING THE OCEANS which aims to collect waste from the bottom of the sea and transform them into yarn and high quality garments through a circular economy model. The exhibition will take place at ART U READY’s headquarters, El Invernadero de The Sibarist, a mid-19th century space hidden in the courtyard of an emblematic building at Calle San Lorenzo, 11.

ART U READY aims to cross borders with this project and plans to replicate this exhibition in Berlin in 2020.

The artist

Ulf Saupe is a German artist (1979). He studied Fine Arts at the University of Kassel with a specialisation in experimental photography under the tutelage of photographer Floris Neusüss.

The essence of his work consists of metaphors that respond to contemporary socio-political and economic problems, through photographs, sculptures and installations that reflect the human condition and its relationship to nature and society.

In recent years the central element of his work has been water. In this exhibition Saupe presents his large-scale cyanotypes (a precursor printing technique to photography, used in the 19th century), with a selection from the series Waterdrops, Res Navalis and Waterscapes, three photographic series of incredible beauty in which, while in the first two he deals with current issues such as bottled water and plastics in the sea, in the last one he pays his own particular homage to the ocean.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a sound installation Lost Drops created by Juan Carlos Fernández Puerta and Marta Serrano Ortega, with the participation of the artist.

Based in Berlin since 2007, he spent a period of his career in Madrid, returning once again for his first exhibition in Spain.

“It was a coincidence to be born on a blue planet. For water will always be an inescapable truth for me”. Ulf Saupe


This exhibition will take place as part of APERTURA, an annual event in which 49 galleries in Madrid agree to open together, on Thursday 12 September 2019.

ART U READY joins its neighbouring galleries, Elba Benítez, Heinrich Erdhart, La Cometa, Carlier Gebauer and Travesía 4, by organising in the patio of San Lorenzo, 11 a drink for all attendees who wish to visit all the exhibitions, where there will be be beers courtesy of La Cervecista and ambient music from 7pm to 10pm by DJ Juanjo Valmorisco.

There will also be a brunch on Saturday 14 September from 11am to 3pm.

We will have the privilege of having the participation of the company 10&10 Danza who will present the performance Ondine, created by Narváez & Runde & Sanz. This performance and musical concept will be curated by Ana Bueno Bueno (Nature).


Opening 12 September: from 5 to 10 p.m.

Exhibition opening hours 13 and 14 September: from 11 am to 7 pm.

Brunch 14 September: from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Espacio El Invernadero. San Lorenzo, 11. Patio. 28004. Madrid


Ecoalf, a pioneer in sustainable fashion, was born in 2009 with the aim of creating the first generation of recycled products with the same quality, design and technical properties as the best non-recycled products. #BecausethereisnoplanetB

“Where others see rubbish, ECOALF sees top quality raw materials”.  Javier Goyeneche, president & founder of ECOALF

Ecoalf Foundation

The Ecoalf Foundation is a non-profit organisation whose main objective is to promote the selective recovery of waste in order to recycle it, recover it and avoid its harmful impact on the environment through the development and application of new scientific and technological knowledge. In addition to educating and raising awareness of the need to protect the oceans.  Through the revolutionary project Upcycling the Oceans, which was born in Spain in 2015 and whose mission is to clean the oceans of marine litter with the support of fishermen and develop a circular economy model.  To date, the project has the support of more than 3,000 fishermen and has removed 400 tonnes of rubbish from the bottom of the sea. It continues to expand to the rest of the Mediterranean and Southeast Asia (Thailand).

La Cervecista

La Cervecista is an establishment specialising in beers located in the centre of Madrid. This initiative was created with the aim of promoting the development of this beverage, especially in the Premium category, through a novel, differential shopping experience with high added value for the consumer. It is a project of Mahou San Miguel, a 100% Spanish company and leader in the beer sector in our country. La Cervecista is located at Calle Mejía Lequerica, 3.


This is a platform to give visibility to artists with values, whose objectives are to improve society. Their projects for 2019-2020 are focused on making calls to action on current issues that concern us.

They define themselves as a constantly evolving cell of ideas that fuses architecture, art, design, technology, education and awareness. They act as a catalyst for talent, a platform to give visibility to creators with a transversal and peripheral outlook, aligning values that improve society.

Consistent with their principles, they stand out for their unique and defined vision of art, and for finding unique spaces for each event and artist.

This proposal is driven by The Sibarist Property & Homes and M-ARTE, as creators, organisers and main sponsors.

Obra Water Drop. Ulf Saupe.