Art Is NATURE
Seminars, Public Talks, Symposia, Summer Schools
Following our programs Art Is Science and Art Is Ocean, in spring 2020 we started a new series of seminars, public lectures, and symposiums dedicated to nature. This series continues with an expanding interest in research, experience, and the way artists inquire into nature and the disciplines that traditionally study it. It also pursues our collaboration with TBA21–Academy, a foundation committed to creating opportunities for artists and scientists to develop a new way of thinking about the seas, as well as a space inside education and art to address crucial questions on the future of life.
Learning like a Plant
Plants_Intelligence. Learning like a Plant (2022–2025) is a new research project of the Institute Art Gender Nature HGK FHNW, supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation SNSF for four years. The project led by Dr. Yvonne Volkart (Head of research at the Institute Art Gender Nature) asks from the perspective of art whether the recognition of vegetal forms of intelligence might lead to other methods of knowledge generation, coexistence, breeding and ultimately to new, “intelligent” forms of plant and agricultural culture?
In addition to Dr. Yvonne Volkart (project leader, vegetal thinking), the project team includes Dr. Felipe Castelblanco (postdoc, artistic research), Julia Mensch (PhD, artistic research) and Dr. Rasa Smite (artistic research).
The research partners of Plants_Intelligence. Learning like a Plant are proven experts in the discourse of plant intelligence. They are responsible for advising on content, methodology, and interdisciplinary discussion. The implementation of curatorial projects will be developed and realized with the cooperation partners. Partners in Switzerland are Dr. Monika Messmer (Deputy Head of Department of Crop Science, Group Lead Plant Breeding, Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL Frick), Dr. Ines Goldbach (Director Kunsthaus Baselland) and Sabine Himmelsbach (Director HeK House of Electronic Arts, Basel). International partners include Hernando Chinoy (Legal Representant Indigenous Territorial Entity Atun Wasi Iuiai-AWAI, Inga Nation, CO), Prof. Ursula Damm (Head of the Media Environments chair, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, DE), Prof. Dr. Birgit Schneider (Professorship for Knowledge Cultures and Media Environments, Department of European Media Studies, University of Potsdam, DE), Prof. Dr. Katja Tielbörger (Head of Plant Ecology / Director Botanical Garden, University Tübingen, DE), Heraldo Vallejo (Legal Representant FUNDACION TIERRA DE SELVA y la comunidad NODO DE PENSAMIENTO ANDINOAMAZONICO, MUNICIPIO DE MOCOA, CO), Marcos Ezequiel Filardi (Director Museo del Hambre, Buenos Aires, AR), Kathrin Meyer (Director Museum Sinclair-Haus (Stiftung Kunst und Natur GmbH), Bad Homburg, DE) and Dr. Raitis Smits (Director Rixc, Riga, LV).
Continue reading… (coming soon)
Supported by Swiss National Science Foundation SNSF
A podcast series produced by the Art Institute and TBA21–Academy.
We have been collaborating with TBA21–Academy for some years now in our common pursuit of a non-binary understanding of the coexistence of culture and nature, of us and the ocean.
The first six episodes of Phenomenal Ocean were released in spring 2020. In addition to Chus Martínez, head of the Art Institute, and Markus Reymann, director of TBA21–Academy, the conversations include marine scientists Skye Morét and Marzia Rovere, geneticist Alexander Tarakhovsky, writer Ingo Niermann, and Francesca Mussi, a researcher in international law, as well as artists Julieta Aranda, Elena Mazzi, Marco Roso, Teresa Solar, and Lena Maria Thüring. The recordings for Phenomenal Ocean were made during The Current II, Summer School and Convening #2: Phenomenal Ocean, both held at TBA21–Academy at Ocean Space in Venice in September 2019.
Led by Chus Martínez
Summer School #2
23 September – 27 September 2019
With Chus Martínez, Markus Reymann, Teresa Solar, Lena Maria Thüring
María Montero Sierra, Marion Ritzmann
Public Events: The Current II Convening #2
28 September 11:00 – 18:00
Julieta Aranda, DIS, Amanda Coulson, Elena Mazzi, Skye Morét, Francesca Mussi, Katrin Niedermeier, Carrol Khadija, Ingo Niermann, Tabita Rezaire, Marzia Rover, Teresa Solar, Lena Maria Thüring, Alexander Tarakhovsky, Studierende Art Institute HGK FHNW / School for Curatorial Studies Venice
The Summer School in Venice is a very important part of a collective conversation about the ways we envision culture today and the implications these ideas have on climate emergency, the ocean, and policy making.
Traditionally, we are presented with different worlds: the world of economic interests, the world of pragmatism and utility versus idealism, the world of art as insignificant with regard to real social developments and change—and this can be extended to the notion of humanity itself. When it comes to climate emergency, we say that it concerns humans equally. But is that so? Is it accurate to hold those creating pollution and selling their waste and those that have no chance to react? This Summer School could be viewed as having two parts: one oriented towards knowing more about how rising sea levels and tourism are affecting Venice, and the other addressing the aforementioned questions at the convening on Saturday 28 September, in which the students participating in the Summer School will play an active role. Additionally, a selected view of the 58th Venice Biennale 2019 through the lens of climate issues will serve as an exercise in including art and artistic practice in this debate.
Participants: Hamza Amleh, Vela Arbutina, Céline Maria Brunko, Nadine Cueni, Damien Juillard, Leah Joséphine Nehmert, Jacob Ott, Diogo Pinto und Studierende der School for Curatorial Studies Venice
Summer School 2019
The Rare Ability to Become Ocean — A method for Ocean literacy
Istituto Svizzero, Rome
14 – 21 July, 2019
Public program Friday 19 July 2019 6 to 9pm
The question of Nature has been placed at the core of the Art Institute’s curricula in Basel for more than three years already. We became aware that the questions related to Nature and those on Gender contain interchangeable notions in many respects. For this reason, we have been inviting special guests to our seminars such as scientists, philosophers and artists, who are capable of creating a context where issues of nature as well as climate related topics can be addressed together with the rise of social movements.
Historically, social justice and natural justice were different categories. This has contributed to the general perception that we could prioritize one over the other. Yet, the way we advocate for awareness, change and the rights of Nature has been using far too much the form of a patriarchal order: «Save the Ocean!» This reveals a hierarchy over the elements as well as the acknowledgement that the Ocean cannot save itself from us.
Therefor it would be wrong to think that when ones say “ocean,” one names a “subject.” One should be more radical and know that to say “ocean” today is to say “art.” Art without the burden of institutional life, without the ideological twists of cultural politics, art as a practice that belongs and should belong to the artists, art facing the urgency of socializing with all those who care about life. In other words, to say ocean is to replace the historical notion of the avant-garde with a code that is not determined by form and the invention of new gestures, but by an investigation into the substance of life, identifying this as the mission of art.
The aim of the meeting is to understand and respond to the research conducted in the ocean as in creating a situation to convey this through art. Together we will try to develop a new way of thinking about the seas, as well as a space inside education and art to address crucial questions on the future of life.
The Summer School is lead by Filipa Ramos with support of Alice Wilke as Research Assistant. Activities include a seminar by Amy Franceschini, a studio visit with Cesare Piestroiusti and a visit to the environmental organization Marevivo.
Friday 19 July, 2019, 6 to 9pm
Picnic at Villa Borghese, Rome
with performances, environmental actions, sound contributions and readings
THE WAVES OF THE OH!S
AND THE AH!S
The Current II led by Chus Martínez
24 – 27 September 2018, Summer School #1
28 – 29 September 2018, Convening #1
Chiesa di San Lorenzo, Venice, Italy
TBA21–Academy, in collaboration with the Art Institute HGK FHNW, presents two days of performances and lectures curated by Chus Martínez, expedition leader of the second cycle of The Current; the first of three annual Convenings exploring the theme Spheric Ocean.
With Diva Amon, Julieta Aranda, Cecilia Bengolea, Claudia Comte, Francesca von Habsburg, Marah Hardt, Donna Kukama, Chus Martínez, Eduardo Navarro, Ingo Niermann, Markus Reymann, Mathilde Rosier, Georgia Sagri, Christina Tony.
Participants to the Summer School #1 from the Art Institute include: Nora Berman, Anastassia Chaguidouline, Anna Diehl, Michael Etzensperger, Martina Henzi, Christopher Hunter, Jain Nikhil, Danielle Küchler, Till Langschied, Kaspar Ludwig, Simone Steinegger, and Jan van Oordt. Raffaella Naldi Rossano, and Luca di Bernardo from Fondazione Morra, Napoli, as well as Claudia Cisnero, Circe Irasema, and Berenice Olmedo from Fundación Alumnos47, México DF. The summer school is mentored by Ingo Niermann, Mathilde Rossier and Georgia Sagri, with the special participation of Dayne Buddo and Joan Jonas.
TBA21–Academy leads artists, scientists, and thought-leaders on expeditions of collaborative discovery. Founded by Francesca von Habsburg and led by Director Markus Reymann, the Academy is dedicated to fostering a deeper understanding of the ocean through the lens of art and to engendering creative solutions to its most pressing issues. TBA21–Academy commissions interdis- ciplinary research that catalyses engagement, stimulates new knowledge, and inspires artistic production. Established in 2011, the nonprofit’s programme is informed by a belief in the power of exchange between disciplines and in the ability of the arts as a vessel for communication, change, and action.
Commissioned and produced by TBA21–Academy
with the support of Art Institute, FHNW Academy of Art and Design, Basel
ON OCEAN INTELLIGENCE
Master Symposium in collaboration with TBA21–Academy
12 April 2018, Symposium (Open to the public)
13 April 2018, Workshop (Only for master students)
With Julieta Aranda, Fernando García-Dory, Francesca von Habsburg, Ingo Niermann, Chus Martínez, Markus Reymann, Teresa Solar
The new interest in nature is not naming a new trend, but the necessity to expand our public space inhabiting it, not only with the institutionalized presence of art and culture, but with questions that represent a transformation on the way we think about the role of art and artists in the invention of a new ground to sense the future. Nature, and so the Oceans, name a complete revolution in the way we sense, in the way we relate organic and non-organic life, in the way we understand gender, generative life, power and life.
The first day of the symposium will be dedicated to sharing the context and the experience of «To Find the Vegan Lion», TBA21–Academy’s first The Current expedition under the leadership of Chus Martínez that took place March 9 – 24 in New Zealand. Francesca von Habsburg, founder of TBA21 and Markus Reymann, director of TBA21–Academy will introduce the program they initiated almost a decade ago on the relationship of art and artists with the understanding of the Oceans. The participants of this first expedition were: Julieta Aranda, Claudia Comte, Francesca von Habsburg, Eduardo Navarro, Ingo Niermann, Markus Reymann, Albert Serra, Teresa Solar and Roman Bayarri as cameraman. Some of them will be present this day and will share their experiences but also discuss the general conditions of a program aimed at creating a different relation with scientists, with the environment and the role art and artists play in expanding traditional notions of experience.
The Current II led by Chus Martínez for TBA21–Academy
An expedition to North Islands, New Zealand
9 – 24 March, 2018
With Julieta Aranda, Claudia Comte, Francesca von Habsburg, Eduardo Navarro, Ingo Niermann, Markus Reymann, Albert Serra, Teresa Solar
I decided to name this three-year cycle on artistic intelligence, philosophy, science and nature the Spheric Ocean. The Ocean is spherical because it is not beside the earth nor below it, but all around it. Its form is not what our eyes see, or not only. Its reality cannot be separated nor told apart from anything else on the lived earth, and therefore it poses a demand on us: the need for a philosophy to help us exercise the Ocean. It is difficult to describe what we are aiming for. I would say we are aiming for a philosophy more than anything else. It would be wrong to think that when one says «Ocean», one is naming a «subject». One could be as radical as stating that to say «Ocean» is, today, to say «art». Art without the burden of institutional life, without the ideological twists of cultural politics, art as a practice that belongs and should belong to the artists, art facing the urgency of socializing with all those that care about life. Or, in other words, to say «Ocean» is to replace the historical notion of the avant-garde with a code that is not determined by form and the invention of new gestures, but by an investigation of the substance of life, identifying this as the mission of art.