Pada Studios/Sluice Art
This mixed media installation was created for Territory Expo, a festival/exhibition organized by the London-based arts organization Sluice and Pada Studios in Barreiro, Portugal. The project was developed during a short residency period at Pada Studios before the exhibition. The piece is a conversation about the historic movement of plants, inspired by the post-industrial area where Pada Studios is and visits to a few different formal botanical gardens in Lisbon. In keeping with the theme of the festival, the piece looks at Portugal's role in moving plants around the globe during the era of exploration/exploitation, and the unintended consequences of taking plant species out of their natural ecosystems and transplanting them into new contexts. On the restricted ex-industrail areas in Barreiro, invasive species such as acacia are thriving, undermining the chances of native species repopulating the toxic area. In the botanical gardens in Lisbon instead, 'exotic' species collected during the colonial period are displayed as marvels of nature and trophies of exploration.