Esculenta – The art of Spagna+Caretto

I’ve met Spagna and Caretto on my last trip to Italy, their work is not dissimilar to mine, but we differ in aims.
At the time the lovely couple were rescuing vegetables from the supermarket shelves to then replant and give them a new life!

preparation of buds

Below is my attempt at transalting their project rationale.
Their website is well worth a good browse, I am particularly impressed by the section where the gathering and preparation of the plants/materials is documented.
If your Italian is not good or not existent i suggest making a google search on esculenta, to then take advantage of the translating tool of the program.

IMPULSE – Esculenta is born from an inner motion; it is outer shape of impetus and instincts. It narrates of the natural and ancestral impulse to collect what is found in nature growing wild in order to nourish oneself and support ones own existence and physical strength.

Esculenta does not aim to analytically examine the more or less extensive variety of edible natural materials, neither attempts to express ecological judgments or to stimulate anachronistic returns to prehistoric life styles. Rather, to get in contact with the core feeling of self-sustain, of the pure physical survival, constitutes origin and founding purpose for the entire project.
From here onwards every possibility of accomplishment of the project is winnowed and bound by precise rules that define the margins of the action at every stage of the process. The constituent stages structure in good part as a temporal succession; sometimes they can exist at the same time, other times reverse themselves in a rewind effect, because of acquired knowledge and experiences during the time.

About info

Diego Bonetto is a multimedia artist living and practicing in Sydney, Australia, and is a key member of artists' collectives SquatSpace and the BigFAGPress. -The SquatSpace collective has been producing ground-breaking events and projects since 2000. The group has been curated in a number of shows both in Australia and overseas. The current initiatives, the Redfern-Waterloo Tour of beauty (www.squatspace.com/redfern) tackle issues of social representation and the politics of space generated by gentrification. -The BigFagPress (BFP) is a publishing facility housed in Wooloomooloo, Sydney. The BFP is a salvaged 4-tonnes Off-set proof press. The press allows for the creation of countless artworks by keen printmakers and self-started publishers. www.bigfagpress.org Diego has also been working with WeedyConnection, an environmental art campaign. The project involves an online resource (www.weedyconnection.com), short documentary films, cooking shows, blogs, installations, prints, facebook interventions and various site-specific installations in the form of self-guided tours. WeedyConnection tackle the anthropocentric view of what environment should look like. Based on research and data provided by disciplines as far apart as biology, anthropology, paloenthology, social ecology and ethno botany it formulates ethical questions about cultural representation in times of environmental urgency.
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