ARTWORK TITLE / YEAR: Keepers Lab & Kitchen (2018)
REGION: Latin America
NOMINATED BY: Alice Smits
The segregation between academics, government and local farmers and producers have made it difficult to build real alternatives towards sustainability. In the case of Chiapas scientific research, which has taken place for over 30 years, the scientific findings for conservation and innovation of these studies have not yet reached farmers and landowners, creating a gap between practice and theory.
When dealing with these gaps and complex problematics, Art and Design have the potential to create bridges and act as mediators: building spaces that enhance dialogue, designing protocols, social processes and symbiotic relationships between people and environment.
Visiting the jungles of Chiapas the artists didn’t bring much more than a kitchen table. Together with local cooks and Mexican top chefs they prepared food, exploring a new local culinary culture using locally sourced products, materials and techniques and in doing so were exchanging ideas on a more balanced lifestyle that reconciles the growing of food and food production with the conservation of the tropical forest and improve the quality of life on the border of the Lacandona Jungle.
‘Around the kitchen table we share information and stories talking about food, cooking, food production, the origin of edible products, agriculture, the resources of the jungle and the culinary traditions of its inhabitants.’
When dealing with complex problematics, Art and Design have the potential to create bridges and act as mediators: building spaces that enhance dialogue, designing protocols, social processes and symbiotic relationships between people and environment. The KEEPERS objective is to generate spaces for encounter, dialogue and exchange, using food as a tool for communication and exchange. Cascoland tested out different communication tools that can be further developed from a mobile into into a permanent Lab&Kitchen. Interdisciplinary communities will keep on working together in realising this Lab&Kitchen in a location in or around Marqués de Comillas where different users can participate in programmes developing innovative processes and products that help protect the forest, it’s biodiversity and the cultures that nurture from it. Art here is a tool to make change happen.
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