Vite potata



Vite potata, originally uploaded by the weed one.

While talking to the local gardener here (il signor Merloni, the most esquisite person), and explaining your background in pretty much a wide spectrum of gardening/farming in orchards and dairy farms, you got entrusted with the task of pruning 3 separate grapes trellis.
It is spring here, well and truly into it, and therefore late for the kind of major pruning those plants desperately needed.
Some of the plants were actually dead. A couple of them, climbing up the pergola in the front garden, have been suffocated by an ivy, so that you had to drastically cut the whole plant, in order to contain the dead material, as it becomes host of all sorts of diseases.
So there you were, fostering and helping out a man-made specie, especially formulated and selected so that it produces a lot of good fruits, and heavily reliant on human interaction/care.
On that tangent, yesterday you went to visit a local garden centre, as this is the time of the year they bring out all of the best plants..
You went to see the commercially viable botany, what is understood over here as good plants to fill your garden/apartment with.
You found some great example of hypocrisy.
Not that the gardeners or the store owners are bad people or whatever, but rather the market rules are filled with hypocrisy.
You saw for sale Wild Rocket, with that exact naming (in Italian obviously, Rucola selvatica) and Wild Asparagus (Asparagi selvatici)
and Blackberries (incredibly you found some hot-house-generated varieties which sports yellow berries and are thorn-less!!) and a number of Clematis Vitalba strains marketed as great climbing screens. Now, while the first two species can be found in abundance in the wild, the second are regarded as serious pests in the fields.
You understand that those plants are directed mainly at urban consumers, who wouldn’t necessarily have access to ‘wild areas’, yet, what interests you is the double standards at play..
In the meantime, you pruned and made sure the grapevine would fruit happily for the coming season.
Grapevines are among one of the earliest plants to be domesticated by humans, evidence taking the practice back to the middle east of 9,000 years ago.
You are also reading the writing and implications that Endosymbiotic theory have in terms of assessing the connection between us homo sapiens-sapiens and the botany surrounding us..
But this is a shot in the dark

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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