A participative exhibition
Toward original ways to question our relationships to nature
The exhibition series (re)connecting.earth searches with the public for ways to (re)establish an emotional relationship with nature. While current environmental debates around global warming scenarios and the amount of CO2 emissions are multiplying, they often have a high degree of abstraction and detachment. In order to overcome what Baptiste Morizot has called a "crisis of sensibility" – a detachment from the plant and animal world – international artists and scientists have been invited to propose ways of reconnecting with the living and natural elements that surround us. The exhibition is seen as a process which evolves and adapts to the different contexts and partners of the cities in which it manifests.
Reconnecting with nature through audience participation
Local and international artists sensitive to environmental issues – such as Julian Charrière, Zheng Bo, Eli Cortiñas, and Valérie Favre – are invited to create instructions for alternative encounters with nature. The instructions offer new perspectives on our interactions with the environment, and how we react to imperatives. In everyday life, we are constantly confronted with instructions designed to promote human coexistence – or to define a framework in which it can evolve. Those created for (re)connecting.earth open up a space for discussion about ecological transition and interspecies dialogue. They invite the spectators – whether in theory or in action – to enter into direct interaction with other beings that inhabit the immediate urban environment. Presented in the form of prints or posters of various sizes in myriad locations, the works trigger an emotion, a thought process, performative actions or the production of physical objects. In each participating city, a selection of additional local artists are invited into this process, joining alongside the new venues of reconnecting.earth.
Artist’s instructions follow a well-known path in art history. Many artists – from members of Fluxus to Duchamp and Yoko Ono – have used this mode of expression in their artistic practice. For (re)connected.earth, the instructions are supplemented by a selection of works by some of the exhibiting artists, which help to contextualize and question the theme of the affective or emotional relationship to flora and fauna. Chosen in reference to each city's unique challenges, the themes of each edition of (re)connecting.earth ask questions such as: How does connecting with nature enhance our present and future? What is the nature of our exchanges with other species? Why are some animals and plants more valued than others?
The instructions and the works are thematic starting points for workshops, participatory lectures between scientists and the public, walks on urban ecology with an artist-scientist duo, and artistic performances that take place occasionally during the exhibition, as part of an extended program.