Margarida Mendes
Dust from the Bodélé depression located on the almost desertified Lake Chad, in southern Sahara, appears as magical element, traveling kilometres across the ocean to become the essential fertilizer of one of the planet’s most exuberant ecosystems, the Amazon. From this now inhospitable region in Central Africa, is provenient this nutritious elixir that, surging the atmosphere, comes to sediment the fertile subconscious of the forest in transition. This subtle balance of essences in motion is unveiled by Adrian Lahoud in his investigations on scale, aerosols and climatic violence, appealing to our understanding of the dynamic components of planetary boundaries, which are in permanent imbalance and negotiation.
The exchange between the valences of each planetary element, its function, metabolism and regulation is inserted within multiple scales of intervention. The discussion about sustainability broadened the spectrum of these scales to the human conception of the social, economic and environmental impacts of each element. Moreover, with the advancement of the concept of natural capital, the corporate mentality has re-equated the vocabulary and the scope of how nature is inserted into this progress-oriented equation. But can the natural world be measured and projected from a refracted partitioned viewpoint? How will different conceptions of nature be included in this equation – including plural and polyphonic visions, which encompass indigenous cosmovisions and the nonhuman perspective?
In this session dedicated to hydrologics we will travel from the Californian Imperial Valley’s Colorado River-fed monocultures, to the extensive dam complexes of Itaipu, Belo Monte and Bento Rodrigues in Brazil, ending in the desert of the Persian Gulf. In a journey that trespasses various camera depictions of the natural subject – from the out-of-body experience to the intimate record of the ethnographic testimony – we will see various multiplications of nature, itself refracted and never stable, incommensurable and per times fictionalized. Navigating the cosmic hiatus of the development, disintegration and reincarnation of particles, we will investigate the fluid dimension of planetary ecosystems, perspectivizing the notion of scale and our own position, in this permanent equation in flux.


Date/Time:Aug 31, at 11:15 pm
Image:Imperial Valley (Cultivated Run-Off), Lukas Marxt

Margarida Mendes


In this Session: