On November 22, 2014 Will Owen concludes his time based plant piece with a three course dinner using the plants he grew in the gallery at Little Berlin.
The Floral Kombat FINISH THEM! Dinner Party
Location Little Berlin, 2430 Coral Street
Date November 22 at 8PM
$3 suggested donation
Selected artist Will Owen
Curated by Maddie Hewitt
For the exhibit Hard To Please, curated by Maddie Hewitt at Little Berlin, New York artist Will Owen has brought kudzu vines back to Philadelphia illegally sent through USPS from a rural town in the Smokey Mountains. Kudzu and the other invasive plants are on the “orange team” and the more traditionally cultivated plants are on the “purple team.”
Floral Kombat is a small-scale experiment demonstrating how invasive plant species overrun other plants in their immediate vicinity if left unattended. This time-based installation includes invasive plants–kudzu and peppermint–that grow alongside other edible, more constrained plants in a large vitrine planter. Throughout the duration of Little Berlin’s exhibit, Hard To Please, the plant growth in the gallery represents the changing landscapes in America, and how it relates to a slow competition for life.
Owen grew up in rural Western North Carolina among the Smoky Mountains. The area is a temperate rainforest diverse with deciduous and coniferous vegetation. Over the last several decades large swaths of the indigenous landscape have become engulfed by kudzu; a perennial vine native to Asia. Kudzu is venerated in Japan where it’s root is dried and powdered and used as a thickener. There are places in Haywood County, North Carolina and across the southern states of America that are now enveloped by kudzu, where the vines are known to grow up to a foot per day in mid-summer.
Kudzu was introduced to the United States as an ornamental bush and an effortless and efficient shade producer at the Philadelphia Continental Exposition in 1876. In the 1930s and ‘40s, the vine was rebranded as a way for farmers to stop soil erosion. Southern farmers were given about eight dollars an hour to sow topsoil with the invasive vine. The cultivation covered over one million acres of kudzu.(1)
Will Owen is an artist working primarily with design, interactive media, sound, and food. Originally from western North Carolina and currently based in a few city centers of the American northeast, Will is interested in the social intersections of the organic & synthetic, memory & perceived reality, and Fozzie Bear & Miss Piggy. Will is currently an artist in resident at Flux Factory in Queens, New York. Recently, Will had an installation at the original site of the Black Mountain College and was included in a 2014 Harvard peer-reviewed study of the “most memorable data visualizations” regarding his design work for the international medical humanitarian aid organization Doctors Without Borders.
1.) Kudzu: The Vine that Ate the South; PorterBriggs.comhttp://porterbriggs.com/the-vine-that-ate-the-south/
Location Little Berlin’s Annex
Date November 22 at 8PM
Anyone can BYOB
Anyone can watch
Day de Dada (http://www.daydedada.com/)
Andrew Cameron Zahn (http://www.http/://cruxspace.com/)
Tyler Kline (http://marginal-liminality.tumblr.com/)
Emma Branson (http://www.emmabranson.net/)
Little Berlin is pleased to announce Philadelphia’s third BYOB. This is a one night event for anyone to bring their own projectors (LCD, overhead, slide, DIY). For this BYOB, there are four featured artists (Day de Dada, Andrew Cameron Zahn, Tyler Kiline, Emma Branson), and there will be space for anyone to project and/or watch throughout the night. The event is free and open to the public. Blacklight specials will be available for donations that go towards The Annex’s mission to provide a platform for weekly screenings, lectures, art critiques, and to house our zine library with a reading area.
BYOB was founded by Rafaël Rozendaal (www.byobworldwide.com) in 2010 and has become a global phenomenon.
Day de Dada is a cooperative of performance artists based in Staten Island, NY. They have a mission to keep the Dadaist spirit alive with installations, music, noise, and performances that they bring to schools, galleries, and festivals. Main collaborative group is Vivian Vassar and Mary Campbell, and projects have included students, teachers, and artists from across the Tri-state area and Europe.
Andrew Cameron Zahn is a new media curator/artist/designer based in Philadelphia. His work is inspired by the intersection of nature and technology, and he uses generative digital and new media processes to create new ways of visualizing data, information, and form. Through multiple systems to build interactive installations, sculptures, and prints, he constantly reprocesses and reinterprets the world around him. Zahn’s work straddles the line between art, design, and performance and investigates the interstitial spaces between disciplines.
In 2014, Zahn opened CRUXspace, Philadelphia’s only New Media art gallery.
Tyler Kline is multidisciplinary artists who utilizes performance, painting, sculpture, and printmaking to investigate the porous boundaries between each form. He has shown and curated extensively in Philadelphia.
Emma Branson works with video, found visuals and audio, and sculptural practices to mutate “commonplace” tropes in order to subvert their meanings.