Invasive Alien Species are Art now

Kris Verdonck hat verschiedene Tiere, die auf der Liste der Invasiven Arten in Belgien stehen, in einer Ausstellung zusammengepackt. Superspannend, echt! Die Ausstellung Exote wird noch bis Sonntag im House of Contemporary Art in Belgien gezeigt.

Theatre maker and visual artist Kris Verdonck selected terrestrial plants, crustraceans, insects, fish, amphibians, birds and other organisms in the list of IAS that live in Belgium. Then he put them all together in one big luminous garden on the first floor of the contemporary art space Z33 in Hasselt, Belgium.

The result is an artificial jungle of bamboo, parrots, bullfrogs, Japanese knot weeds, parrots and little trees carrying blue berries. Before entering, however, you are invited to wear white rubber boots, a pair of gloves, and a lab coat. As if you were about to enter a contaminated space? Or maybe it’s the space that shouldn’t be contaminated by you? After all, men are ultimately, the ones responsible for any ecological damage caused by non native species. They are the ones who introduced them into the new habitat, intentionally or by accident (when exiting Z33 with seeds that would further invade the local fauna for example.) What is sure is that the pristine antechamber in all its whiteness and sanitariness offers a striking contrast to the garden, all messy and multicolored. No one could have orchestrated the effect better than a theater maker like Verdonck.

Once you’re inside, it’s easy to forget that these are ‘invasive alien species.’ Take the green parakeets.

EXOTE, an indoor garden for invasive alien species