Mosaic Rooms Panel Discussion 28/5/15 Photography, Colonialism and the Politics of Planting. Brenna Bhandar, Jennifer Gabrys, Uriel Orlow, chaired by Shela Sheikh.

Mosaic Rooms Panel Discussion 28/5/15 Photography, Colonialism and the Politics of Planting. Brenna Bhandar, Jennifer Gabrys, Uriel Orlow, chaired by Shela Sheikh.

  • “…the act of gardening as a tool for the assertion of power, control and identity.” http://mosaicrooms.org/event/panel-discussion-photography-colonialism-and-the-politics-of-planting/
  • nature has a pivotal role
  • ‘policing of species’
  • the desire to drive lasting roots
  • ‘Landscape and Power’ by W.J.T Mitchell
  • Earth as a silent witness. Plants as sensors and non-human witnesses.
  • Cultivation=civilisation
  • “desire to taxonomies”
  • Uriel Orlow: Double Vision (Native Plants) (2012-14) researched archival images of plants in Palestine, photographed with a stereoscopic camera – takes 2 images. List of flora in Israel and Palestine (identical obv.)
  • Photos of white South Africans looking at nature in a scientific way (white/black, culture/nature, science/art)
  • Looks at how the Botanic garden operates as an archive and expresses the aspirations of a nation.
  • ‘Flower diplomacy’ import of plants (from South Africa) not boycotted as flowers seen as apolitical, and useless.
  • Kirstenbosch Golden Jubilee 1963
  • ‘Botanical nationalism’ and indigineity
  • ‘alien weeds and invasive plants’ – language of xenophobia
  • themes: classification, use, value, ownership, extracting, naming, not seeing plants beyond a western idea of usefulness.
  • Rewriting the landscape (?)
  • Political agency of plants
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