To the side of the beaten path, a cube-shaped hut will stand, embodying and exhibiting the counterparts of organic utopia and plastic dystopia. Crawl inside the hut to contemplate, hear stories, redecorate, chat with a branch, make a friend.
Our contemplative hut at the edge of town calls for visitors 24/7 day and night: the Utopia / Dystopia Cube. The book The Mushroom at the End of the World by Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing looked curiously into the world of mushrooms as a way to examine the relationship between capitalist destruction and collaborative survival within a multi-species landscape. It asks: What can live in the ruins we made, and how? Using this starting point, we wish to build a cube of wooden frames, displaying an oasis where the wisdom and magic of the fungal world connect forest-green, lush utopia with artificial, monotone dystopia. The symbiotic Utopia / Dystopia Cube will look for ways to live on its own, submitting its continuation of survival to the hands of Borderland inhabitants. We will, however, host communal events at the huts.
The Cube welcomes a further metamorphosis as a living installation by constantly (re)developing from organic treasures and plastic waste brought by its visitors. What direction will it find during the week? In short: You can bring and add your elements to this living, symbiotic art space. (We will accept only clean, burnable waste as we can then recycle it all at the end of the week). The Cube will, apart from its symbiont of plastic waste, be built of purely organic material such as spruce or pine branches, moss, stones, and continuously reshape itself. What ways will we find to communicate with the plants and natural elements within it? Will the Cube's Dystopian features turn into breathtaking art that we wish to embrace and cultivate – and will the Utopian counterpart self-destruct in the unpredictable weather and unpredictable amounts or urges of human visitors? Or will we find a way through the week to morph them together? Have we already?
We wish to share the process through the week, to perhaps even find another step in considering the times we live in. We invite everyone to spend a moment in both worlds, and reflect what arises: whether in your own head, or chatting with other people, or feeding Dystopia with your plastic waste or bringing a branch found on the ground to nourish Utopia, maybe accompanied by a song for her. Invite a date with you, or come for a sunrise walk by yourself. Chill out, do a meditation, have a nap. Release your mind, or activate it. Take your favourite plastic waste from your camp with you, and decorate with another Dystopian footprint. Come talk to the moss of Utopia, she might tell you her secrets.
The kingdom of mushrooms is the ongoing backstory in the Cube. During the week, we will grow edible mushrooms and serve mushroom snacks on the last day, tell stories about mushroom mythologies around the world, and mix different living worlds together. Hieroglyphics found in the tombs of the Pharaohs suggest that the ancient Egyptians saw the mushroom as “the plant of immortality.” What can mushrooms inform us about ourselves? Let’s find out together!
A researcher, an actor, a dancer and an urban planner uniting their heads and stomachs to have a playful exchange on ideas of the Anthropocene – the current geologic time period defined by the influence of humans.
Our installation should not produce MOOP as such. Everything we bring onto play, we will be collecting and transporting back. In addition, our cube will be a place where other borderlings can bring their waste to decorate it (these will be also brought back by us).
|Decorative materials: buying moss, plants, flowers, branches, mushrooms etc.||3300|
|Lighting: renting the lighting needed for the cube||3300|
|Wooden structure: one approx. 2.3m x 2.3m x 2.3m cube, built from sturdy wood||1700|
|Logistics and transportation: renting a big van to transport all the material to Borderland||1000|
The cube-shaped hut is open to all every day and night for both solitary chilling, independent exchanges, and communal events. Residents of Borderland are invited to shape the cube further through the week by contributions of both organic and inorganic materials.
Hey friend! Welcome to the virtual drawing board of The Borderland. This is the place where we prototype the projects we'll realise during the week in the quarry.