LAS Art Foundation

Pollinator Pathmaker: Summer Programme

Museum für Naturkunde Berlin Public Programme

June — August 2024

Over the course of summer 2024, LAS Art Foundation presents a four-chapter public programme centred around and located inside the LAS Edition of Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg's Pollinator Pathmaker. Each chapter is conceived as a four-hour event, featuring an expert conversation, a shared meal and a performative gesture.

The LAS Edition outside the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin becomes a place for immersive exchange and collective learning. Fostering appreciation for the garden as artwork, each of the chapters between June and August 2024 invites researchers and practitioners from diverse fields to be in dialogue, including art conservators, biologists and philosophers. The talks are followed by a tasting menu developed and served by culinary resident Chelsea Turowsky in exchange with the garden. Each evening concludes with a performative gesture by a Berlin-based artist and a collective act of care: we tend to the living environment of Pollinator Pathmaker and return it to its inhabitants, the pollinating insects.

Aesthetics and Visual Ecologies

24 June 2024, 17:00 — 21:00

Dr Parul Singh, Prof Dr Michael ohl and Kianí del valle

Most plants are dependent on pollination through insects. The colours, shapes and scents of their flowers have evolved to attract the pollinator that serves them best. Flowers bloom to seduce insects, yet humans too react to their beauty. In making art for pollinators, Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg speculates on this shared response – do insects experience aesthetic pleasure just as we might when looking at a garden? And how have ideas of beauty shaped our relationship to nature in the first place?

Expert Conversation

The visual properties of the Pollinator Pathmaker LAS Edition – the colours of flowers, the patterns they are arranged in and the different heights of plants – are determined by the ways pollinators forage. For us, they are features of an artwork that distinguish it from surrounding green space, an artistic language that we might judge according to our own preferences. Art historian Dr Parul Singh’s work examines how the experience of beauty is linked to culture and structures of power. Her current research focuses on the gardens of Qaiserbagh in Lucknow, India, built in the mid-nineteenth-century by King Wajid Ali Shah during British colonial rule.
Prof Dr Michael Ohl, one of the scientific heads of the Hymenoptera (wasps, bees, and ants) Collection at the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, has extensively researched how wasps sense their surroundings. His work also extends to the theory and history of biology, tracing how aesthetics have influenced evolutionary biology from the very beginning. Dr Parul Singh and Prof Dr Michael Ohl will discuss non-human and human experiences of landscape and pleasure, and the fraught legacy of Western aesthetics theory.

Tasting Menu / Culinary Element

Culinary Resident Chelsea Turowsky serves a bite-size tasting menu based on her month-long exploration of pollinator vision and taste.

Performative Gesture

Dancer and choreographer Kianí del Valle developed a movement-based response to Pollinator Pathmaker focusing on questions of interspecies attraction.


Communities and Representation

29 July 2024, 17:00 — 21:00

More information soon.

Future Public Spaces

26 August 2024, 17:00 — 21:00

More information soon.

Modes of Preservation

3 June 2024, 17:00 21:00

Prof Dr Carolin Bohlmann, Paul Seidler and Omsk Social ClUB

What forms of human care are needed to maintain a (living) artwork? With her proposition to make art for pollinating insects using plants, Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg questions a traditionally human-centred definition of art. Humans, in the case of Pollinator Pathmaker, are neither the authors nor the intended audiences of the living sculptures, but the caretakers tasked with maintaining a balance between the garden’s various elements.

Expert Conversation

Ginsberg's Pollinator Pathmaker Editions are computed by an algorithm to provide optimised foraging grounds to a variety of pollinating insects. As artificial ecosystems designed for nature, they require intensive human care. Prof Dr Carolin Bohlmann, a professor at the Institute for Conservation and Restoration at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, has experimented with preservation techniques for organic and living materials throughout her career in order to maintain them within the arts institution. This approach is challenged by artist collective terra0’s proposition of using blockchain technologies to render ecosystems independent of human interference. Prof Dr Bohlmann and Paul Seidler, founding member of terra0, debate the role of humans and the technologies developed by them in maintaining artistic and ecological systems. What would happen if they were taken out of the equation?

Tasting Menu / Culinary Element

Culinary Resident Chelsea Turowsky serves a tasting menu based on her month-long exchange with the living artwork.

Performative Gesture

Omsk Social Club presents the newly commissioned sonic work Just Us, a hyper-performative wandering experience in dialogue with Pollinator Pathmaker. The work unfolds as a score of sonic and verbal elements that guide through the garden's hidden pathways, offering spaces of introspection. Just Us explores how the concept of friendship might act as a node between botanical, human and other characters.

A smartphone and headphones are required to experience the work. Please bring your personal devices if possible.


Biographies

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Artist

Prof. Dr. Carolin Bohlmann

Artist

Omsk Social Club

Artist

Paul Seidler I terra0

Artist

Dr Parul Singh

Artist

Prof Dr Michael Ohl

Artist

Kianí del Valle

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01
Installation|20 June 2023 — 01 November 2026

Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg : Pollinator Pathmaker