Swaantje Güntzel (*1972) is a Hamburg based German artist. Before entering the School of Fine Arts in Hamburg she lived and worked several years abroad (Mexico/Bolivia) and holds a Masters Degree in Anthropology. She worked as the assistant of Andreas Slominski and participated in numerous exhibitions in Germany as well as abroad and has received various grants especially in Scandinavia. In 2015 she won the biannual Ars Loci Art Award from the Neuhoff-Fricke Foundation for the Promotion of Arts and Science.
Her work addresses the alienated relationship between humanity and nature. She exposes the inconsistencies of our actions and the hypocrisy of our value system, drawing attention to the unthinking exploitation of animals and the environment in the industrialized global economy.
For several years now she has been dealing with the various facets of anthropogenic pollution of the oceans with an emphasis on phenomena such as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (garbage vortex in the Pacific Ocean), the emergence of the „plastisphere“ and microplastics. Recently she has started to work on human generated noise pollution of the oceans and its impact on marine fauna.
Much of her work is inspired by scientific research.
She works across a range of different disciplines such as performance, sculpture, installation, photography, sound and video.