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The practice-based research carried out throughout several projects and assembled in this exposition is structured around a rhizomatic nexus of still ongoing entries into plant-thinking and co-becoming with plants, partly based on photographic, photosynthetic and biosynthetic processes under the project framework Cogito ergo Pisum, partly based on archival findings, found footage, phenomena and related discourse. "Cogito, ergo sum" is a philosophical statement in Latin by René Descartes, usually translated into English as "I think, therefore I am". The phrase originally appeared in French as je pense, donc je suis in his Discourse on the Method, to reach a wider audience. Connecting and collapsing the notion of thinking with plants – or in this case gray peas of the species Pisum sativum var. arvense, transposed into "Cogito ergo Pisum" – is at the heart of this research. Within the project I am researching, developing and cross-breeding a flora of transdisciplinary experiments, new material studies and processes, that revolve around ways of rethinking, creating for and becoming with other life forms. Photographic, biosynthetic and agricultural methodologies are being used in Cogito ergo Pisum to both analyze and synthesize new ecologies. On the basis of horizontal (gene) transfer, hybridity and hospitality, a number of agents, patients and symbionts have been subject to material-semiotic and transgenic inquiries: Timo the artist and Timo the grey pea — bioart experiments involving horizontal transfer of my DNA to a grey pea cultivar (Pisum sativum var.arvense). Pisum Sativum used by Gregor Mendel in 1856 when unfolding many of the rules of heredity, now referred to as the laws of Mendelian inheritance, constitute a key plant in "Cogito ergo Pisum". Epidermodysplasia verruciformis, also known as Tree Man Syndrome, an extremely rare autosomal recessive genetic hereditary skin disorder, and Foliate heads, also known as Green men, constitute a highly symbolic reading of a hybrid plant-human being. Several works and results of the processes active in Cogito ergo Pisum have been installed in a number of exhibitions, many of which are ongoing or infinite by nature; presented in open archival or horizontal hybrid structures with documents, negative cyanotype photograms, wall drawings and lab notes on paper, mail correspondence, facsimile of illustrated manuscripts, and cultivations of growing grey pea seeds. Some of them, including literature, phenomena, found footage and historical events have later made it into the polyphonic performance reading "Mörk Materia / Dark Matter(s)", which has been adapted and reconfigured to the contexts it has been performed in. Using photographic and moving images, documents, objects, drawings and plant cultivations I am approaching, renegotiating and speculating about our common nature-culture, to both highlight and transform an increasingly dark matter: body, earth, space.
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