The project Tree has just had a second development phase at Internationales Waldkunst Zentrum (International Forest Art Centre), as part of KunstTREFFpunkt, a programme presenting performance projects in public space in Darmstadt, Germany. For this residency in Darmstadt, I worked with Sydney based artist and collaborator Cat Jones remotely, through electrical signaling processes via e-mail, skype and dropbox.
Apart from carrying out site-specific research in the local forest ‘An der Ludwigshöhe’, including tree species, mycelium and local stories related to the woodland, Cat and I gave a talk about our respective artistic practice and our collaboration on Tree. We facilitated a workshop with local participants who use the forest ‘An der Ludwigshöhe’ recreationally, to collect their personal stories related to the forest and to explore the unique (visual) imagery in our minds.
We also tested a 20min long work-in-progress version of the audio walk Tree, still in its very early stages. It was exciting to see how the actual forest around us, perceived with all the senses, could be matched with research on visual imagination in Neuroscience, explored through entering the metaphorical ‘forest in our brain’ made up of pyramidal neurons that resemble tree structures. During the test walk, participants also found out about plant signaling processes amongst tree species and personal stories related to the forest, whilst encountering mysterious sounds from a forest in a very different, far away geographic location.