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Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Ark: Old seeds for new cultures

The Ark is the Greek entry in the 12th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. According to its creators (Phoebe Giannisi, Zissis Kotionis), this installation re-focuses on old seeds and the ideological biodiversity that is at our disposal, but which lies forgotten and on the brink of extinction; while, at the same time, it provides the promise for new cultures of life in the soil.
In the Greek Pavilion, Yannis Isidorou creates a visual and sound installation, producing a simulation environment with the initial agrarian production experience.
Kostas Manolidis, with his landscape topologies hints at the capacity to rethink the wealth of the ground through his representations.

Maria Papadimitriou in her seed laboratory re-introduces agricultural practices connected with the pleasurable experience of nutrition into the extensive ground of a metropolis. Alexandros Psycholis typesets a guide for aspiring urban life gardener-cultivators.
The Ark itself was designed and constructed, bearing the heavy memories of the phytogenetic material from the Greek landscape, while at the same time it travels, along with its visitors, unsuspecting yet familiar inhabitants of a world where collective survival became a condition for the survival of the very world in which we survive.
Stimulating the senses; pleasure and hedonism; companionship and cohabitation, as they were experienced by the various collaborators over the five-month experience of completing this collective piece, are settled in the Ark, as a counterweight to the consumerist monasticism of city life.

Commissioners / Curators: Phoebe Giannisi, Zissis Kotionis
Design of the Ark and the Installation: Phoebe Giannisi, Zissis Kotionis

Duration30/03/2011 - 22/05/2011

PlaceAthens, Greece
Benaki Museum
Pireos Street Annexe

OrganizationHellenic Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climatic Change and University of Thessaly

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