Featured Project

Evoker by Jakob Kudsk Steensen

Honoring the Wild Proliferation of Earthly Perspectives

Emergence Magazine
Dates
9/3/2024
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Dates
11am - 8:30pm
Location
Arebyte Gallery, 7 Botanic Sq, Leamouth Peninsula, London E14 0LG
Overview

The symposium explores TTRPGs as physical interfaces between the body and the imaginary, and questions their myriad uses as transformative activities. Beyond leisure activities, might we think of these strange forms of play as novel opportunities for immersivity, problem solving, explorations of contingency, and perhaps most importantly, communal storytelling?

While an increasing number of contemporary artists have started to embrace the form and bring tabletop gaming mechanics into the development of participatory artworks, the TTRPG community itself remains a remarkable testing ground for the possibilities of play as a kind of “empathic technology”. Here, critical play is capable of strange things... might it temporarily untether us from the stagnant imaginaries of a post-capitalist inertia? Could role-playing games even come to function as vital tools for activism, or the forging of new communities?

Speakers at the event include acclaimed RPG designers Emmy Allan, Kayla Dice, Mike Mason, Chris McDowall, Samuel Mui, and Zedeck Siew, alongside writers, historians and theorists such as Stu Horvath, Timothy Linward, Mark Pilkington, and Simon O’Sullivan.

An exhibition of TTRPGs-inspired video games by artists Kitty Clark, Uma Breakdown, John Powell-Jones, Petra Szemán, and Holly White are hosted on computers and available to play for visitors throughout the whole event.

The day culminates in live TTRPG play sessions of the games Eco Mofos by artist David Blandy and SUPERZEROES by TTRPG game designer Samuel Mui, amongst others, inviting the audience to play with a deck of uniquely designed TTRPG playing cards.

The event features a selection of merchandise and publications from
Strange Attractor Press, independent London-based bookshop Igloo Tree, Massachusetts-based MIT Press and zine supplier Antipode Zines. Games from Laurie O’Connel and Loot the Room will also be on sale.

Dates
1/12/2023
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21/1/2024
Dates
Location
BOZAR, Brussels
Overview

Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg (1982, London) is a multidisciplinary artist examining our fraught relationships with nature and technology. Through subjects as diverse as artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, conservation, and evolution, she explores the human impulse to "better" the world. She experiments with simulation, representation, and the nonhuman perspective to question our ongoing societal fixation on innovation over preservation despite the environmental crisis. Ginsberg received her PhD from the Royal College of Art, London, and has exhibited work at MoMA New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, the Centre Pompidou, and the Royal Academy. Her work is in collections including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and ZKM Karlsruhe. In April 2023, she opened her first US solo exhibition Machine Auguries: Toledo at the Toledo Museum of Art.



​​​​​​​Richard Mosse (1980, Ireland; based in New York) has consistently documented historically significant subjects using photographic media that foreground elements of these narratives. Mosse seeks to heighten and extend the language of documentary photography to draw attention to overlooked yet urgent conflicts, often with a critical emphasis on the limitations of photojournalism, an activist’s sense of purpose, and a belief in the power of aesthetics to communicate, creating immersive and groundbreaking new forms in documentary photography and the moving image. He was awarded the Prix Pictet (2017), the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize (2014), and a Guggenheim Fellowship (2011). His work has been exhibited at the Akademie der Künste, Barbican Art Gallery, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hayward Gallery, Louisiana Museum, National Gallery of Art, National Gallery of Victoria, SFMOMA, and he represented Ireland at the 55th Venice Biennale.

Dates
17/11/2023
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19/11/2023
Dates
Location
La Casa Encendida, Madrid, Spain
Overview

Through food – using it as a lens that allows us to observe in detail the transformation of landscapes – and the exploration of the blurred boundaries between art, architecture, ecology and geopolitics, the Cooking Sections collective, founded in London in 2013, investigates the systems that serve to organise our world.

Cooking Sections arrives at La Casa Encendida to curate Ágora Climávora, a programme that confronts the problems posed by intensive agricultural systems and large-scale distribution networks from the Iberian Peninsula to the European Union and proposes alternative practices that avoid or limit the processes of water pollution, dependence on chemicals in farming and the dumping of waste from macro-farms. The programme’s final goal is to understand these processes and propose models for the future: new rural economies and new ways of relating to the territory and the landscape.

The initiative is also about contributing to rethinking the Mediterranean as a common space and connecting similar realities in different parts of Europe and the world; in short, understanding and reorienting our existence.

Within the framework of the Spanish Presidency of the EU Council during the second half of 2023, Ágora Climávora is part of the broad cultural programme of dissemination and reflection that brings citizens closer to the values, projects and current challenges of the European Union.

Dates
30/8/2023
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Dates
5pm
Location
Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London
Overview

The intention behind this Closing Ritual is to spark enduring dialogues among climate activists, artists, art professionals and the public, focusing on the pivotal role of art in the climate emergency.

Participants include Cherry Truluck, Heather Ackroyd (Ackroyd & Harvey), Helene Schulze, Love Ssega, Victoria Siddall and Ellen Mara De Wachter.

6.10pm: Culinary performance by artist Cherry Truluck
6.35pm: Introduction by Rachel Thomas, Chief Curator of the Hayward Gallery
6.45pm: Artist Heather Ackroyd in conversation with environmental protectors, Helene Schulze of London Freedom Seed Bank, LIVE + BREATHE co-founder Love Ssega and Destiny Boka-Batesa, who helped found Choked Up
7.30pm: Love Ssega's music/poetry performance
8pm: Panel discussion on art's role in climate action

8.40pm: 20-minute mindfulness session inspired by Agnes Denes’ Living Pyramid with Ellen Mara De Wachter

Dates
29/7/2023
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Dates
7pm
Location
Level 5 Function Room, Green Side, Royal Festival Hall
Overview

Artist Otobong Nkanga and author Irenosen Okojie discuss their use of myth-making to tackle themes of extraction of the body and land, memory, care and repair.

Dates
11/7/2023
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Dates
Location
North Flower Walk, Kensington Gardens
Overview

Pollinator Pathmaker is a one-of-a-kind experiment in interspecies art. A constantly expanding artwork in an unlimited edition, it is created for pollinators, planted and cared for by humans. For the Serpentine Edition of Pollinator Pathmaker, Ginsberg worked with horticulturists at the Eden Project, Cornwall, pollinator scientists and experts to curate a database of plants that supports pollinator populations local to the site of the artwork. Once the conditions of the Kensington Gardens site were agreed, Ginsberg’s custom-built computer algorithm used this database to create a unique planting design that supports the maximum number of pollinator species possible. The empathetic planting patterns that emerged offer local pollinators – including bees, moths, ants, wasps, and beetles – habitats to forage throughout the year, and arrangements which suit different pollinating styles.

You can create your own Pollinator Pathmaker DIY Edition using the planting algorithm at www.pollinator.art.


Dates
23/6/2023
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Dates
7pm
Location
Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall
Overview

Hayward Gallery Chief Curator Rachel Thomas chairs a panel of three artists featured in Dear Earth: Imani Jacqueline Brown, Jenny Kendler and Daiara Tukano. The conversation digs into the relationship between activism and art making, how the two inform each other and the boundaries between them.

Dates
11/6/2023
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Dates
14:00 - 18:00
Location
Lecture Theatre, Professor Stuart Hall Building (LG-02) Goldsmiths, University of London 80 Lewisham Way London SE14 6NW
Overview

Once, financial practitioners plied a hybrid trade as hydrologists, star-gazers, and weather-watchers who sought to discover the natural laws of value and exchange as they did the divine order of an unchanging nature. Today, corporate firms hire trend forecasters and scenario planners to play out strategic fictions in virtual worlds. Hurricane insurance markets simulate a turbulent climate to offer investment instruments to hedge against the risks of the stock market. And for financial astrologers operating in the city of London, celestial motions provide a cosmic map that orients the mood of terrestrial markets.

Bringing together artists, researchers, and interstitial practitioners, Catastrophe Time! pays attention to the conditions of speculative knowledge on an increasingly volatile planet. Traversing a gray zone between rigorous research and operative science fictions, its contributors question how practices of speculation may transform, undermine, and at times exceed, the worlds they set out to model.

Edited by artist Gary Zhexi Zhang, Catastrophe Time! explores the power of temporal technologies—whether currencies, conspiracies, or simulation models—to shape reality through fiction. By bringing together researchers and writers working at the boundaries of temporal practices, including Diann Bauer, Philip Grant, Bahar Noorizadeh, Habib William Kherbek, Klara Kofen, Suhail Malik, Kei Kreutler, Bassem Saad, Gordon Woo and Aslak Aamot Helm.

SPEAKERS:

GORDON WOO is a catastrophist specializing in the quantitative modeling of extreme events. Motivated by his training in theoretical physics, his research has focused on multiple alternative versions of history. He graduated as the best mathematician of his year at Cambridge University, completed his PhD at MIT as a Kennedy Scholar, and was a member of the Harvard Society of Fellows. He is the author of The Mathematics of Natural Catastrophes, and Calculating Catastrophe, published by World Scientific Press, and is a visiting professor at University College London. He is also the editor of the Frontiers journal section: Geohazards and Georisks.

KLARA KOFEN is a writer, researcher, director and artist with a background in intellectual history and philosophy. She studied at Glasgow and Oxford, before commencing her masters at the Guildhall School as a Guildhall Scholar. She is the co-artistic director of Waste Paper Opera, with whom she has created five large-scale pieces of experimental music theatre and multiple smaller projects. Klara’s research interests lie in cross- disciplinary collaboration, engaging with the communicative space between human an non-human actors, Early Modern history, and opera as a medium in the context of Western intellectual history. In her capacity as a freelance researcher and translator, she works for the research organisation Other Internet, a strategy consultancy that specialises on international trade shows and Bayreuther Festispiele.

SUHAIL MALIK is Co-Director of the MFA Fine Art, Goldsmiths, London, where he holds a Readership in Critical Studies. Recent and forthcoming publications include, as author, ContraContemporary: Modernity’s Unknown Future (Urbanomic) and ‘The Ontology of Finance’ in Collapse 8: Casino Real (2014). Malik is co-editor of The Flood of Rights (2017), a Special Issue of the journal Finance and Society on ‘Art and Finance’ (2016), Genealogies of Speculation (2016), The Time-Complex. Postcontemporary (2016), and Realism Materialism Art (2015).

BAHAR NOORIZADEH looks at the relationship between art and capitalism. In her practice as an artist, writer and filmmaker, she examines the conflictual and contradictory notions of imagination and speculation as they suffuse one another. Her research investigates the histories of economics, cybernetic socialism, and activist strategies against the financialization of life and the living space, asking what redistributive historical justice might look like for the present. Noorizadeh founded Weird Economies, a project that traces economic imaginaries extraordinary to financial arrangements of our time. Her work has appeared at the German Pavilion, Venice Architecture Biennale 2021, Tate Modern Artists’ Cinema Programme, Transmediale, among others. Noorizadeh has contributed essays to e-flux Architecture, Journal of Visual Culture, and Sternberg Press; and forthcoming anthologies from Duke UP and MIT Press. She holds a PhD in Art at Goldsmiths, University of London where she was a SSHRC Doctoral Fellow.

JAMIE SUTCLIFFE is a writer, curator, and co-director of Strange Attractor Press. His writings have appeared in Art Monthly, Frieze, Rhizome, amongst others. He is the editor of Documents of Contemporary Art: Magic published by Whitechapel and The MIT Press.

GARY ZHEXI ZHANG is an artist and writer. His writings on art, economics, history of science and technology have appeared in periodicals including ArtReview, Journal of Design and Science, and Verge Journal of Global Asias; and books such as Against Reduction (MIT Press, 2021), Incomputable Earth (Bloomsbury, 2023), Platforms (Singapore Biennale, 2023), Future Art Ecosystems III (co-authored with Victoria Ivanova; Serpentine, 2022).

Dates
21/4/2023
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22/4/2023
Dates
All Day
Location
Science Gallery, London
Overview

PANEL DISCUSSIONS

Gaia: The Story of Science
Edna Bonhomme, Daisy Hildyard, Merlin Sheldrake and Gaia Vince.

Gaia theory has inspired scientific and cultural narratives that highlight the interdependence of humans and the natural world. Drawing on biology, environmental science, climate and histories and languages of science, the panellists will explore Gaia theory as a form of scientific storytelling that weaves together different disciplines and connects them to a profound narrative about the Earth's history and future. What is the role of science in society? What kinds of storytelling allow us to hold many sciences together at the same time?

Gaia Today
Sougwen Chung, Asad Raza and Gary Zhexi Zhang.

What are the legacies and utilities of Gaia theory within today's art, culture, technology and society? In this panel discussion, artists, technologists, curators and scientists reflect on the influence of Gaia theory on contemporary ideas and practices of collaboration, mutualism and sustainability. What new models of living can be developed that prioritise ecological stewardship and economic redistribution? How do Gaian ideas support human and other-than-human creativity and explorations of consciousness?

WORKSHOP

Polymorphic Microbe Bodies: Multisensory Somatic Workshop
Erin Robinsong and Hanna Sybille Müller

Polymorphic Microbe Bodies is a multisensory dance work created by Hanna Sybille Müller and Erin Robinsong that invites audiences on a somatic journey into their own bodies. Guided by binaural sound, smell, touch, language and taste, we travel the microbial worlds inside our mouths, guts and imaginaries. More than half the cells in our bodies are not human but microbial, and we are like planets, composed of ecosystems, inhabitants and relationships. Bacteria, viruses, archaea and fungi together form ‘our’ body. What does it mean to be a multispecies community? How do we feel our multiplicity?

NOTE: Participants must bring their own headphones and smartphone to access the binaural sound file via a QR code.

DOCUMENTARY FILM

Symbiotic Earth: How Lynn Margulis Rocked the Boat and Started a Scientific Revolution

John Feldman, 2017, 2h 27m

Symbiotic Earth explores the life and ideas of scientific rebel Lynn Margulis, who challenged entrenched theories of male-dominated science. As a young scientist in the 1960s, Margulis was ridiculed when she first proposed that symbiosis – when organisms live and work together — was a key driver of evolution, but she persisted. Through numerous collaborations, including developing the Gaia theory with James Lovelock, she caused a seismic shift in our understanding of life. Margulis’ symbiotic narrative presents an alternative to the destructive worldview based on extraction from the natural world and competition with others. Her vision offers bold insights into health, society and nature, and inspires creative approaches to our pressing environmental and social crises.

ARTISTS’ SHORT FILM PROGRAMME

IMAGE: EGLĖ BUDVYTYTĖ IN COLLABORATION WITH MARIJA OLŠAUSKAITĖ AND JULIJA LUKAS STEPONAITYTĖ, STILL FROM SONGS FROM THE COMPOST: MUTATING BODIES, IMPLODING STARS.

Eglė Budvytytė in collaboration with Marija Olšauskaitė and Julija Lukas Steponaitytė, Songs from the compost: mutating bodies, imploding stars, 2020

Songs from the compost is a hypnotic exploration of nonhuman forms of consciousness and different dimensions of symbiotic life: interdependence, surrender, death, and decay. The song lyrics draw on the work and words of biologist Lynn Margulis, celebrating the role of bacteria in making life and the collaboration between the single-cell organisms possible, as well as concepts by the science-fiction author Octavia Butler, who employed tropes of symbiosis, mutation, and hybridity to challenge hierarchies and categorisation.

IMAGE: KYRIAKI GONI, STILL FROM A WAY OF RESISTING (ATHENS DATA GARDEN), 2020.

Kyriaki Goni, A way of resisting (Athens Data Garden), 2020

An imaginary community of digital citizens stores its most valuable digital data in micromeria acropolitana – a small plant that is endemic to the Acropolis. The life cycle of data follows that of a plant, fostering a relation of interdependence and care. In a peculiar garden, users become the plants’ gardeners, whereas plants in their turn become gardeners of the stored information. Can anyone think of the future of connectivity beyond surveillance, minimising the consequences of technological infrastructures on the natural environment? Is it possible for the bond between human and non-human worlds on this planet to be substituted?

Kyriaki Goni, The mountain islands shall mourn us eternally (Dolomites Data Garden), 2022

A plant indigenous to the Dolomites addresses humans and shares a simulation revealing the upward migration and extinction of its species, due to rising temperatures and overexploitation of land. Is there any hope, or will the mountain islands indeed mourn life as we know it on Earth? The plant transmits information about a decentralised alliance of techno-shamanic, interspecies communities spread around the planet known as data gardens. Storing digital memory in the plants' DNA, this network has at its epicentre interspecies care and solidarity.

IMAGE: ASAD RAZA, STILL FROM GE, 2020-ONGOING.

Asad Raza, Ge, 2020-ongoing

The first iteration of Ge, an endless and evolving video work, mixes fiction and documentary to create a portrait of the bioscape surrounding James Lovelock’s Dorset home: the conditions that produced the idea of the planet as a living feedback loop. The second iteration features the artist and his daughter demonstrating how to make soil from sand, vegetable matter and other ingredients. The third iteration traces a sailing trip with seven musicians across Lake Erie, and a subsequent performance of music they made on the voyage, in collaboration with the lake.  

IMAGE: BEN RIVERS, STILL FROM URTH, 2016.

Ben Rivers, Urth, 2016

Urth was filmed in and around Biosphere 2, the largest closed ecological system ever created for scientific research in the Arizona desert, designed to emulate Earth’s environment (Biosphere 1). Taking its title from the Old Norse word suggesting the twisted threads of fate, Urth forms a cinematic meditation on ambitious experiments, constructed environments, visions of the future and humankind’s relationship with the natural world. An unnamed protagonist, who appears to be the last survivor of her kind, reflects upon her own mortality and the unknowable fate of the planet after the end of humanity.

IMAGE: MARIANA SANCHEZ SALVADOR AND RAIN WU, STILL FROM AS ABOVE, SO BELOW, 2020.

Mariana Sanchez Salvador and Rain Wu, As Above, So Below,

Empathy begins with acknowledging the position of our body in the world, not simply towards a different body, but also across time and dimensions. Food spans across all aspects of our lives, from the most profane everyday nourishment to the sacrifices that made an anthropological imprint on the collective psyche. It connects science and myth, known and unknown. The meal, the settlement, the landscape, the cosmos, down to the microbial and viral in our guts and in the air—food allows us to discover a new perspective on our world. The film makes use of archive images and microscopic photography of edible substances—fruits, vegetables, grain, fish, vitamins—as a metaphor of the macro, to create a timeless, scaleless world.

IMAGE: JENNA SUTELA, STILL FROM HOLOBIONT, 2022.

Jenna Sutela, Holobiont, 2022

Holobiont considers the idea of embodied cognition on a planetary scale, featuring a zoom from outer space to inside the gut. It documents Planetary Protection rituals at the European Space Agency and explores extremophilic bacteria in fermented foods as possible distributors of life between the stars. Bacillus subtilis, the nattō bacterium, plays a leading role. The term 'holobiont' stands for an entity made of many species, all inseparably linked in their ecology and evolution.

IN COLLABORATION WITH GAIA ART FOUNDATION AND SCIENCE GALLERY LONDON TO COINCIDE WITH THE PUBLICATION OF GAIA AND PHILOSOPHY BY LYNN MARGULIS AND DORION SAGAN (IGNOTA, 2023).
MEDIA PARTNER: TANK

Dates
4/3/2023
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Dates
2.00 - 3.30pm
Location
Jodrell Lecture Theatre, Kew Gardens
Overview

Christine Eyene

Christine Eyene is an art historian and curator. She is a Lecturer in Contemporary Art at Liverpool John Moores University and Research Curator at Tate Liverpool. She is also completing her PhD in Art History at Birkbeck, University of London.

Eyene is the founder of Bikoka Art Project, a new initiative developed in the village of Bikoka in Lolodorf (Cameroon), to provide creative and professional opportunities to young people and women. Through this project, she is also embarking on new research into Lolodorf’s history, traditional knowledge, natural environment, and contemporary culture.

In the context of Orchids, she is currently presenting Portrait of a Community – Features of a Land, a photographic display by Cameroonian artist Yvon Ngassam, depicting the people and landscapes of Lolodorf. She also curated a soundscape with field recordings by Ngassam and compositions by sound artist Elsa M’bala.

Christine Eyene has organised exhibitions internationally. She is currently artistic director of the Biennale Internationale de Casablanca (2022-2023). In 2021-2022 she was on the selection committee of The London Open 2022 (Whitechapel Gallery), Jerwood/Photoworks Awards 2022, and member of jury of the Turner Prize 2022.

www.eyonart.org

Cooking Sections

Cooking Sections examines the systems that organise the world through food. Using site-responsive installation, performance, and video, they explore the overlapping boundaries between art, architecture, ecology and geopolitics. Established in London in 2013 by Daniel Fernández Pascual and Alon Schwabe, their practice uses food as a lens and a tool to observe landscapes in transformation. They have worked on multiple iterations of the long-term site-responsive CLIMAVORE project since 2015, exploring how to eat as humans change climates. In 2016 they opened The Empire Remains Shop.

Their work has been exhibited at Tate Britain, Serpentine Galleries, SALT, Bonniers Konsthall, Lafayette Anticipations, Grand Union, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Atlas Arts, HKW, Storefront for Art and Architecture; the Taipei Biennial, 58th Venice Biennale, Istanbul Biennial, Cleveland Triennial, Shanghai Biennial, Los Angeles Public Art Triennial, Sharjah Architecture Triennial, Sharjah Art Biennial, Performa17, Manifesta12, and New Orleans Triennial among others. They have been residents at Headlands Center for the Arts, California; and The Politics of Food at Delfina Foundation, London. They are part of British Art Show 9. They lead a studio unit at the Royal College of Art, London, and were guest professors at the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich.

Cooking Sections were nominated for the Turner Prize in 2021. They were awarded the Special Prize at the 2019 Future Generation Art Prize and were nominated for the Visible Award for socially-engaged practices. Daniel is the recipient of the 2020 Harvard GSD Wheelwright Prize for Being Shellfish.

www.cooking-sections.com

Dates
14/12/2022
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Dates
18:00
Location
Delfina Foundation
Overview

This multi-part evening opens with a viewing of the first iteration of Maya Marshak’s work Vision Fields. Produced during her residency, this mural, comprised of painting and moving image projection, is an outcome of her research in South Africa and the UK around lost agroecological knowledges.

Following the viewing, L. Sasha Gora will deliver a lecture (18:30) titled Down the Wrong Way: Toward an Environmental History of Cuisine, considering the idea of culinary extinction through the ways recipes map how cultures eat and adapt to the worlds around them.

Responding to the themes of environmental and culinary ghosts explored in Maya and Sasha’s work, David Bates will then present Against the grain… and back again, sharing with guests a selection of wheat grains and breads. This will include sourdough bread made with a recipe devised specifically for the evening, which will include ancient, heritage and modern grains. Together, these encompass the past, present and potential future of our interaction with wheat. David is the Library and Information Services Manager at Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs) who Maya met during her research into agricultural policies as a part of her residency supported by Chatham House.

Finally, bringing the event to a close, Sasha will be offering a ‘mock mock turtle soup’, as featured in her lecture.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Vision Fields
Maya Marshak

A ‘vision-field’ is the area which can be seen while the eye is focused on a fixed point. Maya’s work looks at how ideas of control and standardisation rooted in post-enlightenment thinking and enacted through imperial and green revolution agriculture have impacted agroecological knowledge, practice and ecologies – and how they continue to shape agricultural visions in the face of climate change.

With a previous focus on maize in South Africa, and here in the UK, through a lens on wheat and an interest in patterns, Maya has been tracing the ideas underpinning industrial agriculture and the social-ecological worlds that these ideas have created and displaced.

During her residency at Delfina supported by Chatham House, Maya has been exploring archives, visiting farms and scientific research spaces, and talking to people with knowledge about wheat farming. During this process she has been ‘collecting ghosts’ from wheat’s ancient and vast journey, as it has crossed continents and climatic zones and shape-shifted in relation to ideas, politics, science, climates and social-ecological entanglements. These ghosts of things lost and things created take the form of nutrients, roots, insects, recipes, chemicals, ideas.

As part of this collaborative evening, Maya will present her first iteration of Vision Fields, taking the form of a mural-sized agricultural monoscape painting and an evolving animation. MayaShe invites participants to engage with the work and offer ghosts that may be added to the story.

Down the Wrong Way: Toward an Environmental History of Cuisine
L. Sasha Gora

How do human appetites shape plants and animals, land and water, the world’s present and its future?

Because eating is one of the most direct ways that people interact with environments, by literally digesting them, fashions in food not only map changes in taste but also social, environmental, and technological transformations.

In Down the Wrong Way: Toward an Environmental History of Cuisine, cultural historian L. Sasha Gora shares her research about culinary reactions to climate change. Reflecting on how humans know, endanger, and perhaps even conserve flora, fauna, and their habitats through culinary practices, her work seeks to merge food studies and the environmental humanities.

Zooming in on the history of turtle soup, Down the Wrong Way considers culinary extinction – which is to say the ghosts of appetite’s past –, how recipes map how cultures eat and adapt to the worlds around them, and the entanglements between people and plants, cuisine and climate.

Against the grain… and back again
David Bates

David’s presentation of a selection of wheat grains and breads reflects the way that, until the 19th Century, farmers actively cultivated diverse fields of wheat – known as landraces. Since then, and especially during the Green Revolution, the focus has been on developing monocultures – vast crops which are genetically identical. However, in recent years, there has been push-back against this with a number of small farmers reintroducing landraces and deliberately encouraging genetically diverse crops. The NIAB (National Institute of Agricultural Botany) is also conducting research which involves going back to ancient grains from which modern wheat emerged. The idea is to restore genetic diversity in order to create resilience and reliability in the face of climate change and emerging disease threats.

The Library and Information Services Manager at Chatham House, David is passionate about baking and enjoys working with textures and flavours but also baking in resistance to industrial bread and its impacts on human and environmental wellbeing.

Dates
10/12/2022
-
Dates
14:00
Location
Asymmetry HQ, 102a Albion Drive, London, E8 4LY
Overview

A communal tasting – celebrating biodiversity and fermentation, movement and fluidity.

Curated by Delfina Foundation resident L. Sasha Gora and Delfina Foundation resident & Asymmetry Curatorial Fellow Erin Li, in collaboration with chef Songsoo Kim.

Playing with forms of hospitality and co-existence, this communal tasting at Asymmetry HQ aims to nurture a curious yet welcoming social situation that breaks down the boundaries and conventions of the collective meal – which is to say a script of courses, a hierarchy of seating, and a repertoire of flavours organised according to national allegiances.

Polyphonic Bodies II instead serves an edible landscape and invites visitors to graze, “forage”, and freely combine bites, the process of which catalyses connections and conversations related to biodiversity, cultural plurality, the climate crisis, and the generosity of the bacteria that choreographs good health and pleasure.

Please note vegetarian and vegan options are available but are limited.

POLITICS OF FOOD

This event takes place in collaboration with Asymmetry Art Foundation, and forms part of the public programme of Delfina Foundation’s fifth season of the Politics of Food, in partnership with Gaia Art Foundation and with additional support from a range of individuals and partners.

BIOGRAPHIES

SongSoo Kim. Made up of two characters Song is like the English word, and Soo means Life to live with song. It’s all in a name, the song I sing with this body I occupy, I try and observe the things that move me. In the process of meeting myself and others, I have met food as a practice and medium and have been learning what taste is, bitterness, sensing, fermenting, movement, and being moved. In this play, I think of pleasures and desires. Through “tasting” together I’m learning what possibly “taste” could be.

Dates
30/11/2022
-
Dates
19.00
Location
Delfina Foundation, 29-31 Catherine Pl, London SW1E 6DY
Overview

Bringing together season’s residents, the group has been reading a discussing an evolving constellation of texts – spanning wide histories, geographies and ideologies – about and produced by movements that have sought to challenge extractive relationships to the land.

In this first public meeting of the group, those who have been involved in the group to date will read selected extracts from the texts studied so far and engage in an open discussion on the texts, the learnings of the group, its future trajectory.

If you would like to browse the reading materials the group has engaged with over the first six sessions, click here.

A light spread of Armenian food, prepared by Agnes Cameron and her co-residents, will be available for guests to help themselves to from 19:00, with the reading group session commencing at 19:30.

Dates
29/11/2022
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Dates
18.30 - 20.30
Location
Delfina Foundation, 29-31 Catherine Pl, London SW1E 6DY
Overview

Emerging out of his work in recent years around group world building, at Delfina Foundation David has been developing a tabletop game as a means to embark on a collaborative exploration of his research around the legacies of the Swynnerton Plan.

For this workshop, we invite you to watch or play an early version of Gathering Storm, the collaborative world-building game created by David. Players will take it in turns to add elements to a map, imagining a post-colonial sci-fi world and then creating a set of characters to inhabit this space. They will then respond to prompts, coming to terms with hidden histories and present injustices. No previous experience of tabletop gaming is necessary to play.

The evening will commence with an introduction to the game by artist David Blandy. Guests will then break into groups to play, supported by specially invited guests Susuana Amoah, Annie Jael Kwan and Jamie Sutcliffe.

Complementary alcoholic and non-alcoholic pineapple-based drinks will be provided to the audience.

Please book via Eventbrite. If you have any questions, please contact us on events@delfinafoundation.com.

This game is a starting point for a wider project David is developing, incorporating text, installation, games and moving image.

The monsters’ time is over. But some still remain along with the alien fruit that fills pockets and their bellies. We strive for another world. Perhaps the world from before. But the world from before is gone. So we must grow something new.

Please note this event is now sold out.

Dates
20/10/2022
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15/12/2022
Dates
18:30 - 21:00
Location
Delfina Foundation, 29-31 Catherine Pl, London SW1E 6DY
Overview

Taking place around the kitchen table, the local territory and in our imaginaries – and enacted through cooking, eating and sharing together – these four gatherings are inspired by the practice of Comunalidad.

Comunalidad is a set of collective practices enacted by the indigenous communities of Oaxaca in southern Mexico: it is a way of living and working that emerges from a specific relationship with nature proposing other organising mechanisms and an alternative to sustainability.

Over the course of the gatherings, participants will develop a collection of formulas, strategies and practices to build up trans-local learning environments and experiment with collaborative ways of strengthening our relationships with nature in order to aid its regeneration.

This series is for participants who seek to challenge, overthrow, and replace the systems that oppress and exploit nature, humans and other species.

The workshop series is free but limited to 20 participants. Participants must commit to join all four gatherings and must be over 18.

If you are interested in participating please email events@delfinafoundation.com (subject line: Tierra Sostenible) with just a few sentences about yourself and why you wish to participate. As some events will involve food, please also mention in the email any dietary requirements.

The event is open to all with an interest in the subject and activities.

For those who apply before midday on Monday 17 October, places will be confirmed via email that afternoon.

Further information about the locations of gathering 2 and 3 will be shared with participants in due course.

Dates
26/9/2022
-
30/12/2022
Dates
Location
Delfina Foundation, London
Overview

In Autumn 2022, Delfina Foundation will launch its fifth season of residencies and public programming focusing on The Politics of Food. As the most pressing issue of our time, this iteration will take as its focus the climate emergency, engaging with it through the specific lens of eco-social interdependence. Through a wide range of activities, the programme’s participants will take food as their entry point to explore the interconnections between the ecological crisis and our economic, social, cultural, and political crises. The climate emergency is an interdependent one, thus addressing our relation to food and its complex infrastructures is a critical component to the survival of both human and non-human species.

Dates
20/9/2022
-
20/9/2022
Dates
14.00 - 18.30
Location
The House of KOKO, 74 Crowndale Rd, London NW1 1TP
Overview

Spanning cross-disciplinary collaboration, speculative creative outcomes and hybrid realities, the panel will include innovators and leaders from the technology sector, the design world and across the creative industries, giving participants a front row seat to the dreams, anxieties, & projects at the forefront for London’s futurists. Join us for a series of conversations and performances at the intersection of technology and design, curated by Suhair Khan.

The event is currently sold out, but a live recording will be available. For more details, head to the London Design Festival website.

Dates
11/8/2022
-
Dates
18:00
Location
Delfina Foundation, 29-31 Catherine Pl, London SW1E 6DY
Overview

This evening gathering will commence with an oat-sowing ritual, collectively performed in a sonic landscape developed by Cherry in collaboration with sound artist Helga Mendes daFonseca.

Under the full moon, guests will be invited to plant seeds, grown by Cherry herself, in earth taken from the ground in Somerset where they were first nourished – completing one growth cycle and beginning another.

This ritual will be followed by a feast, created in collaboration with chef Grace Gibbons (Spring, Maremma, Kitchen W8).

This event launches THE ANIMIST ALMANAC, a six-year programme of arts-based research and practice initiated by artist Cherry Truluck around oat cultivation and fugitive temporalities.




Dates
22/6/2022
-
Dates
Location
Hyde Park, London
Overview

This April, Serpentine will begin work on the first London incarnation of artist Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg’s Pollinator Pathmaker, kickstarting Back to Earth 2022 activations that will include an exhibition presented at Serpentine North from 22 June to 18 September 2022. Back to Earth is Serpentine’s continuous multidisciplinary programme evoking reactions to the environmental emergency.

In collaboration with The Royal Parks, this third edition of the garden at North Flower Walk, an area measuring 227 metres long in Kensington Gardens, will comprise 4,471 plants including over 60 different species. It will come into bloom early summer after its planting launch this April.

Dates
1/11/2021
-
Dates
Location
Overview

Insect pollinators see the world quite differently from humans. Flowers may appear a different colour to a bee or to a butterfly or to the colour we see. This is because insects’ eyes sense different parts of the colour spectrum and so gardens look very different to insect pollinators.

Working with Eden’s horticulturalists, leading pollinator experts, and an AI scientist, Ginsberg devised a living artwork, built using a unique algorithm, to look at this problem – Pollinator Pathmaker. Creating this tool to design with empathy for other species is at the heart of Ginsberg’s artwork. You can now use the algorithm tool to generate a garden design. All you need to do is describe where your garden is, how big it is, and its soil and light conditions, and you can play with the algorithm’s empathy tools.

Head to pollinator.art now to create your own garden!


Dates
29/9/2021
-
1/12/2022
Dates
Location
Overview

Becoming CLIMAVORE, a project by Cooking Sections, explores the gap between the appearance and the reality of salmon—their inability to escape intensive farms. For this UK-wide project, 21 museums have now removed farmed salmon from the menus of their cafés and restaurants, and introduced CLIMAVORE dishes made with ingredients that improve soil and water quality, and cultivate marine habitats. This move continues Cooking Sections' collaboration with restaurants in Skye and Raasay since 2017.

You can now taste CLIMAVORE dishes at:


Aberdeen Art Gallery
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead
BFI Southbank, London
Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, Coventry
Holburne Museum, Bath
London Transport Museum
Manchester Art Gallery
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
Royal Museums Greenwich
Science Museum, London
Science and Industry Museum, Manchester
Serpentine, London
Tate Britain, London
Tate Liverpool
Tate Modern, London
Tate St Ives
The Whitworth, The University of Manchester
Turner Contemporary, Margate
Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Wellcome Collection, London

And in Skye and Raasay:
Edinbane Lodge
Eòlach
Isle of Skye Baking Company
Loch Bay
Raasay House
Rosedale Hotel
Scorrybreac
The Ferry Inn
Three Chimneys

Visitors can taste a CLIMAVORE meal and collect one of the postcards from a twelve-part mosaic at participating restaurants filled with CLIMAVORE stories and recipes.

The project at the Herbert is accompanied by Cooking Sections' installation Salmon: Traces of Escapees, the second chapter of the salmon trilogy.

𝘉𝘦𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘊𝘓𝘐𝘔𝘈𝘝𝘖𝘙𝘌 was developed as a Back to Earth campaign at the Serpentine in collaboration with Benugo.

Dates
14/7/2021
-
Dates
Location
Delfina Foundation, 29/31 Catherine Place, London SW1E 6DY
Overview

Gaia Art Foundation and Delfina Foundation are delighted to announce an open call for UK and international practitioners to participate in season 5 of ‘The Politics Of Food’ 2022. The programme will focus on the most pressing issue of our time: the climate emergency.

Agriculture alone is responsible for 30% of greenhouse gas emissions, 92% of global water use, 38% of earth’s ice-free land, and is a major source of biodiversity loss and land degradation. In our oceans, the impact of the world’s fastest growing food production system – intensive aquaculture – encapsulates the complexity of future “sustainable” diets as nutritional, policy and environmental factors rub against one another. Addressing how and what we eat is critical to the survival of both human and more than human species.

Since 2014, ‘The Politics of Food’ programme has worked with artists, activists, agronomists, artisans, bakers, butchers, chefs, economists, farmers, fermenters, foragers, historians, scientists, policy makers, nutritionists and more, delivering over 100 residencies with public programmes taking the format of meals, exhibitions, walks, talks, pickings and a pop-up cafe. The first book dedicated to the topic was published at the end of 2019 and is distributed by Sternberg Press.

For this open call, Gaia Art Foundation and Delfina Foundation are open to a variety of responses to our sub-theme, but we are particularly interested in interdisciplinary collaborations between artists/curators and researchers seeking to evolve ideas beyond this residency and traditional art spaces. In addition to creative practitioners, we are keen to receive applications from researchers, including but not limited to traditional knowledge holders, academic researchers, scientists, ecologists and gastronomes alike, who are interested in this form of collaboration. Opportunities will be available for in-person residencies and virtual engagement, as well as public programme events. This open call should therefore be considered as an expression of interest to participate in a range of ways.

Before applying, we strongly encourage applicants to look at Delfina Foundation’s previous seasons of The Politics of Food and book, as participants will be selected based on how they are building on and complementing our existing body of work.

To apply please head to the Delfina Foundation website and complete the application form.

Dates
5/7/2021
-
Dates
Location
Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry
Overview

We are delighted to share that artist duo, Cooking Sections (Daniel Fernández Pascual & Alon Schwabe) have been nominated for the 2021 Turner Prize. Gaia Art Foundation proudly supports Cooking Sections and their on-going project CLIMAVORE, initiated in 2015. The Turner Prize jury applauded the ingenuity of CLIMAVORE, which explores how our diet can change in response to the climate emergency.

The members of the Turner Prize 2021 jury are Aaron Cezar, the director of the Delfina Foundation in London; Kim McAleese, the programme director at the Grand Union complex in Birmingham; the actor Russell Tovey; and Zoé Whitley, the director of Chisenhale Gallery in London. The jury is chaired by Farquharson.

The Turner Prize 2021 exhibition will be held at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum in Coventry from 29 September to 12 January 2022 as part of the UK City of Culture 2021 celebrations. The winner, who receives £25,000, will be announced on 1 December 2021 at an award ceremony at Coventry Cathedral.

Dates
28/9/2020
-
20/12/2020
Dates
Location
Delfina Foundation, London
Overview

science_technology_society seeks to support contemporary interdisciplinary approaches that consider, intervene in, and speculate on the world in which we live and its possible futures. The programme fosters cross-sector collaborations, accelerates ideas and supports the development of new projects which aim to make a tangible impact on our lives.

The second edition of the programme will take place in autumn 2020, once again in partnership with Gaia Art Foundation.

Given the relevance of the global pandemic to this theme, the programme will provide a focused virtual and physical environment to address a range of urgent issues shaped by the research, interests and practices of our specially-selected international residents and UK associates.

Dates
28/9/2019
-
Dates
3 - 5pm
Location
Royal College of Art Gorvy Lecture Theatre, Dyson Building, 1 Hester Road, London, SW11 4AN
Overview

Join Artist Anicka Yi, Anthropologist and Philosopher Tobias Rees and 58th Venice Biennale curator Ralph Rugoff for a discussion on dialogue and collaboration between artistic and scientific communities. In this panel discussion led by Ralph, Anicka and Tobias will each present their recent work and projects and the research behind them. The event is organised by Gaia Art Foundation in partnership with Bagri Foundation and Royal College of Art.

Given the relevance of the global pandemic to this theme, the programme will provide a focused virtual and physical environment to address a range of urgent issues shaped by the research, interests and practices of our specially-selected international residents and UK associates.

Dates
14/5/2018
-
Dates
6.30 - 8.30pm
Location
The Showroom, 63 Penfold Street, NW8 8PQ
Overview

Launch of The Empire Remains Shop – Cooking Sections' first book following the eponymous ongoing research and installation. The evening will feature an introduction by the book's editor Jesse Connuck, a response to the book by Nadine El-Enany, the lecture-performance "The Next 'Invasive' is 'Native'" by Cooking Sections, and a Q&A; followed by The Plant That Could Sink Your Mortgage Cocktails.

The Empire Remains Shop is published in 2018 by Columbia Books on Architecture and the City Supported by the Gaia Art Foundation

Dates
1/1/2017
-
Dates
Location
Somerset House Studios
Overview

Gaia Art Foundation and Outset Contemporary Art Fund are delighted to launch the Outset x Gaia Art Foundation Hub at the Paint Room, Somerset House. The multi-purpose space will provide a platform of exchange for artists, makers, thinkers and entrepreneurs at the crossroads of the newly opened Somerset House Studios and Makerversity communities. This new partnership sees both philanthropic organizations realizing a new cultural hub and supporting the £1.8m capital campaign transforming former Inland Revenue offices into Somerset House Studios. The joint support is part of the Studiomakers initiative in partnership with The Mayor of London to secure affordable workspaces for creative professionals in London for the long term.

Dates
-
12/5/2023
Dates
Location
Overview

Once, financial practitioners plied a hybrid trade as hydrologists, star-gazers, and weather-watchers who sought to discover the natural laws of value and exchange as they did the divine order of an unchanging nature. Today, corporate firms hire trend forecasters and scenario planners to play out strategic fictions in virtual worlds. Hurricane and drought insurance markets offer investment instruments tied to a turbulent climate as a hedge against the risks of the stock market. And for financial astrologers operating on Wall Street, celestial motions provide a cosmic mapping that orients the mood of terrestrial markets.

Through essays and interviews, Catastrophe Time! pays attention to the conditions of speculative knowledge, whether through modeling or intuition, exploring its pitfalls and its potentials. Traversing a gray zone between rigorous research and operative science fictions, its contributors question how practices of speculation may transform, undermine, and at times exceed, the worlds they set out to model.

Edited by artist Gary Zhexi Zhang, Catastrophe Time! explores the power of practical fictions--whether currencies, cults, or forecasts--in the shaping of fragmented temporalities. By bringing together researchers and writers working at the boundaries of temporal practices, including Diann Bauer, Philip Grant, Chiara di Leone, William Kherbek, Klara Kofen, Kei Kreutler, Suhail Malik, and Bassem Saad, this urgent volume seeks to make sense of the unraveling moment in which we live.