Fondelac by Kristen Schroeder

Fondelac by Kristen Schroeder

A pitted chunk of concrete propped the big metal door open to direct the cooler night air into the warm building. Even after so many hours, the warehouse still reverberated with activity and energetic conversation. A constellation of illuminated tablets bobbed on wires dangling from the elevated power grid, as clusters of people—mismatched as the now carefully stacked seedlings—flipped through videos and articles and schematics.

Their voices rose and faded as they reviewed and discussed the enormous fragmented mechanical skeleton spread across the tables.

Alva and four others sat on conference room chairs, arranged with careful piles of half-disassembled ancient electronics around a small digital scale.

“I think I’ve found a schematic for a relay that doesn’t need copper, Alva,” said Tanvir, winking at her over the top of his thick bifocal glasses. The older man was unmatched in his ability to find schematics with obscure requirements. Alva smiled at him and set her thin tablet to the side.

“Incredible as always, Tanvir. …”

Kristen Schroeder is a doctoral student researching stress responses in water-dwelling bacteria, and is currently based in Stockholm, Sweden. She holds a Master of Science from the University of Saskatchewan, located in Saskatoon, Treaty 6 Territory, Canada, and has lived most of her life in the surrounding prairie. Her practice has navigated between printmaking, painting, and writing, with her most current work engaging with themes of identity and belonging, the function of biology research in contemporary life, and the femme experience.

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