Topic: Botanical Gardens: In Darkness and in Light:
As part of the InterCreate EcoSapienz event we propose a speculative creative project in the gardens, one we hope that may later develop into a more substantial future collaborative event.
The REMNANT/EMERGENCY Artlab is a Lab style event that involves rigorous research and experimentation across several countries between 2010 and 2012 incuding in January 2011, New Plymouth via the Intercreate EcoSapienz event. Australia Council Funded Artlabs are substantial, long-term awards of high esteem awarded through a highly competitive process They are funded to allow established artist researchers the opportunity to re-new, re-think and reflect upon their practices – as a means for establishing future approaches, new practices and directions and offer a rare opportunity to work with less rigidly defined goals that would be typical of many other production-led projects. Consequently the Australia Council state them as an opportunity to engage in a ‘very high degree of risk taking’ to ‘experiment with radical creative processes and be flexible to outcomes that cannot be predicted in advance’.
Building upon our group's creative research and production recently in Sydney (http://www.remnantartlab.com www.xtension.cc) – and in the understanding that Ecosapienz has a strong association with the botanical gardens at Pukekura Park for the event. Through a practice-led, arts research approach we will seek to uncover and re-present some of the alternative activities, ecosystem services and cultural stories typically absent from the discourse around botanical gardens . This discussion has already begun with the Friends of the Park. We will particularly focus on activity in the gardens recorded under the cover of night (e.g. animal movements) and therefore unseen by the general public, potentially extending to the adjacent zoo and its nocturnal feeding visitors. To date potentials include setting possum bait stations, hedgehogs, cats and rats, nocturnal bird life like native the Morepork and eels and koura (freshwater crays) in the streams. We will also draw upon a history of field experiments (e.g. via the Friends of Pukekura Park Kete http://kete.pukekura.org.nz) – to augment that which we can experience with parallel narratives.