Plants_Intelligence. Learning like a Plant

Presentation and discussion with Yvonne Volkart, Rasa Smite, Felipe Castelblanco, Julia Mensch about their ongoing Swiss National Foundation research project 

7 July 2022 

In this presentation we explore an angle of neo-extractivism by attending to the non-human beings that bear the heavy toll of the very promises of development. Across the Global South, plants remain instrumental for economic agendas that seek to level up the output of the region in the global economy, via agroindustry, “green” revolutions or land-use policies that run on novel modes of resource extraction. However, plants’ unique capacity for survival is also the creation and sustenance of the living. Plants solve problems, adapt to and form their environments, or endure hard times and reappear where devastation and ecocide precede. In doing so, they form alliances with farming and Indigenous medicine collectives, with plant breeding scientists, agroecologists, and artists to device modes of resistance and survival. Therefore, this presentation unpacks key questions concerning plant intelligence and presents ongoing research by artists and theorists working with project partners across Argentina, Colombia’s Andean-Amazon region, and Northern Switzerland.  

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