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Events

Border Environments: The entangled politics of ecology and migration


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Phytogenesis II | University of Plymouth

Building on the success of 2021 symposium in which transdisciplinary dialogue was generated around the newly enlivened subject of vegetal life, Phytogenesis II seeks to expand the field of enquiry by exploring more overtly political and activist nuances and provocations in the plant-philosophy-photography assemblage.

Climate change, and its devastating global effects, provides an impetus for this shift in focus, away from the instrumental and towards the ethical, allowing for ‘plant-human becomings and coevolutions to emerge’ (Aloi, 2018).

Organized by Dr Carole Baker & Marjolaine Ryley, with : Dr Prue Gibson and Dr Fabri Blacklock, Dr Giovanni Aloi, Dr Uriel Orlow, Nettie Edwards, William Arnold, Jamie House, Malcolm Dickson, Hannah Fletcher.

 


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Von Pflanzen lernen | Kunsthalle Nairs, Scuol

A transdisciplinary conversation on the relationship between humans and alpine nature in times of climate change, with Uriel Orlow, artist, Dr. Sonja Wipf, Head of Research and Monitoring, Swiss National Park, Zernez, Prof. Dr. Boris Previšić, Director Institute Cultures of the Alps, University of Lucerne, Dr. Andreas Weber, biologist and philosopher, Berlin, Sabine Rusterholz Petko, curator of the exhibition and Christof Rösch, Co-Director Fundaziun Nairs.

 


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Sex Ecologies | Kunsthall, Trondheim

Participation in the panel Plants as reproducers of stories during the opening weekend of Sex Ecologies at Kunsthall, Trondheim. In this panel, curator Natasha Ginwala and artists Uriel Orlow and Otobong Nkanga explore plants in the context of colonizations, globalization, and consumer society. Sex Ecologies explores gender, sex, and sexuality in the context of ecology.


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Vulnerable Treatments | Maat, Lisboa

Screening and conversation with Sofia Lemos as part of a public assembly on the space and time of epidemics, curated by Andrea Bagnato and Ivan L. Munuera.

Vulnerable Beings: Sounding Out starts from the consideration that the current COVID-19 pandemic is neither unprecedented nor the only one: for a large part of the world, infectious diseases were and remain part of daily life. What were modernity’s blind spots in dealing with disease, and to what extent are they still with us today? What geopolitical maps and bodies matter? To answer these questions, we will reach back to unexpected histories and geographies, and look ahead toward possible futures. The ideas developed in the first assembly will be built upon and expanded into other bodies, environments, narratives, and politics. Sounding Out will explore invisible vulnerabilities and co-dependencies; wildness as a way of confronting exclusion; and the colonial traces embedded in medical institutions. We will highlight localised medical traditions and their conflict with Western medicine; investigate targeted violence in the context of settler colonialism; and explore local and global genealogies of activism. For three days, we will sound out the voices of Jack Halberstam, Himali Singh Soin, Isabel Amaral, Sofia Lemos, Edwin Nasr, Uriel Orlow, Jasbir K. Puar, Sarah Schulman, Nerea Calvillo, Lucía Casani and Mónica Carroquino, Tamara Giles-Vernick, Michael Marder, Elise Misao Hunchuck, Françoise Vergès, and Michael Wang.


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Assembleia das Plantas | Galeria Municipal, Porto

The Gineceu & Estigma programme – whose epicentre is the Gardens of the Palácio de Cristal – aims to make people aware of new perspectives linked to the universe of Botany, through artistic creation and research into gender, politics and nature.

The programme includes conferences, workshops and interpretative courses on the botany of the garden, designed by researchers and guest artists, structured around two themes: Ecopensamento, which begins with ecocritical studies to foster discussion about new possibilities of interdependence between the natural, social and political domains; and Especulações Botânicas, in which questions are introduced that have been raised by artists about the science dedicated to the study of plants, such as the scientific nomenclature of species and recognition of empirical and popular knowledge about their healing powers.

Assembleia das Plantas is a workshop given by Uriel Orlow, and the result of a research residency that the artist carried out in the Gardens of Palácio de Cristal, to give rise to an interpretation of the political, healing and historical implications of the relationship between humans and plants. It will consist of two connected moments.


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Conversing with Leaves | Galeria Municipal, Porto

The Gineceu & Estigma programme – whose epicentre is the Gardens of the Palácio de Cristal – aims to make people aware of new perspectives linked to the universe of Botany, through artistic creation and research into gender, politics and nature.

The programme includes conferences, workshops and interpretative courses on the botany of the garden, designed by researchers and guest artists, structured around two themes: Ecopensamento, which begins with ecocritical studies to foster discussion about new possibilities of interdependence between the natural, social and political domains; and Especulações Botânicas, in which questions are introduced that have been raised by artists about the science dedicated to the study of plants, such as the scientific nomenclature of species and recognition of empirical and popular knowledge about their healing powers.

Artist talk with Uriel Orlow, “Conversing with Leaves”, about some of his recent art projects which look to the botanical world as a stage for politics and history.

 


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Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) | Utopiana Geneva

Uriel Orlow will present a lecture performance Grey, Green, Gold (and Red), followed by the presentation and launch of two recent publications Affinités des sols | Soil Affinities and Theatrum Botanicum.

Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) expands on the themes and concerns of Orlow’s project Theatrum Botanicum (2015-2018), considering plants and gardens as active agents in politics and history. Following human-plant entanglements, Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) explores the role played by the garden Nelson Mandela and his fellow inmates planted on Robben Island prison during their 18-year incarceration, the implications of an ongoing battle between a flower and a squirrel, as well as the fate of alien species in Europe and South Africa.


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Postkoloniale Verstrickungen | Völkerkunde Museum Zürich

Der Begriff Postkolonialismus beschreibt die Auswirkungen von Kolonialismus, Dekolonisierung und neokolonialen Tendenzen auf die heutige globale Situation als verflochtene, reziproke Geschichte des Westens und des Globalen Südens. Das aktuelle Thema beschäftigt Wissenschaftler/innen, Künstler/innen und ethnologische Museen auch in der Schweiz. «Postkoloniale Verstrickungen der globalen Schweiz» lautet der Titel der neusten Ausgabe der Zeitschrift Widerspruch/72, in der konkrete Fallbeispiele beleuchtet werden. Wie lassen sich postkoloniale Erkenntnisse wirksam machen? Kurzvorträge werfen Schlaglichter auf die Publikation und auf konkrete Themen.


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Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) | Manifesta 12, Palermo

The lecture performance Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) considers plants and gardens as active agents in politics. Following human-plant entanglements, Grey, Green, Gold (and Red) explores the role played by the garden Nelson Mandela and his fellow inmates planted on Robben Island prison during their 18-year incarceration, the implications of an ongoing battle between a flower and a squirrel, as well as the fate of alien species in Europe and South Africa.


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Politics of Nature | Universtät St. Gallen

The conference calls attention to the politics of nature, a key feature of contemporary neoliberalism and its planetary ambitions. Late capitalism has not only wide-ranging effects on the transformation of labor and subjectivities, but is also causing drastic changes in the government of nature. While the “limits-to-growth” environmentalism of the 1960s placed ecology at the center of the intellectual agenda, and the “sustainable development” movement launched in the 80’s replaced old-fashioned notions of nature with “the environment”, the current popularity of the category of the Anthropocene and climate crisis are promoting the grand narrative of an Earth-at-risk.

The purpose of the conference is to stimulate a cross-disciplinary reflection on the “states of nature” that are emerging from discourses centered on the threat of abrupt planetary environmental catastrophes, chronical conditions of ecological vulnerability, strategies of security, survival and adaptation, and the political and poetical imaginary of extinction and mutation. What is the role, responsibility, and complicity of critical theory and the arts in shaping the political and aesthetic reactions to large-scale eco-social devastations? What is the relation between the logic of coloniality and the Anthropocenic political episteme of deep history, unpredictable planetary tipping points, fear and resilience? What are the intellectual and political implications of our current, and conflicting, politics of nature?

Organised by Federico Luisetti and Emmanuel Alloa (School for Humanities and Social Sciences, Universität St. Gallen).

The conference was sponsored by the Universität St. Gallen, Research Committee, in collaboration with the Italian Thought Network


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