Rocket Boat Day, or the deconstruction of Barbie's Castle

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One fine Saturday afternoon all it took was a few empty PET Bottles, a bricolage of assorted leftovers from kids' treasure chests and some chunks of styrofoam to conjure up about twenty more-or-less waterproof vessels of all shapes, sizes and aesthetic qualities for this year's Rocket Boat Day.

Succulent Scenery

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For two days in early September, from the uncharted mists of the recently opened patabotanist's laboratory, emerges a team of explorers carrying strange devices. Somehow they don't seem to belong to the streets of Ghent through which they wander: stopping at awkward places, staring into storm drains, scrutinizing the pavement… have these people lost a set of keys, a wallet?…

Chrysantemum Day at Borrowed Scenery

On 9 September we celebrate Chrysanthemum Day in the Borrowed Scenery Lab. It is a day to slow down and admire plant life, on site and online. FoAM will prepare a special afternoon tea in the Snoepwinkel with a menu of foods and plant walks. In the afternoon we will launch the Borrowed Scenery website, including the Zizim app – an evolving map of plant life in Ghent - and Aniziz ...

Mycorrhiza

mycorrhiza-all

mycorrhiza is a symbiotic (generally mutualistic, but occasionally weakly pathogenic) association between a fungus and the roots of a vascular plant.

Unmanned RT phase 01 – notes from the wild

In sweltering heat, over mountaintops and through forgotten valleys a team of hikers make their way, powered only by aromatic herbs and the thrill of exploration, to touch, taste and smell the landscape we will get to see from unmanned vehicles – if we make it through this hike…

Borrowed Scenery tendrils reach out

Some serious connecting work going on with borrowed scenery for joining physical and imaginary worlds together. A new Boskoi database is up and running, giving us a place to put all kinds of story elements and plants found in the city. Boskoi uses the Ushahidi platform, which provides an API the game is now using to pull all items tagged in the map (which can come from the Android app ...

Clay mushrooms

More work on the Borrowed Scenery game project and a first screenshot, experimenting with different visual styles. I'm trying modelling clay to get a 3D look on the fungi and using Theun Karelse's mockup characters for player avatars. The floor is being built out of map tiles of Ghent pulled from OpenStreetMap, using the OpenLayers API which has been pretty fast to get running.

FoAM Newsletter Summer 02012

The summer season is a time for us at FoAM to take a few steps back from our busy routines to engage in uninterrupted creative endeavours, including some revitalising fieldwork. Two broad and eclectic questions will be taking centre stage in the coming months: how do we prepare for uncertain futures, and what would a plant-inspired culture look like?

Patabotany

For a while now we’ve been using the term ‘patabotany’ to describe a hybrid between ethnobotany (the study of cultural, spiritual and medical uses of plants) and Alfred Jarry’s 'pataphysics, the science of imaginary solutions. In projects PARN and groWorld, patabotany is becoming a colloquial term. Our online game germinationX and the foraging app Boskoi are currently in the process of being brought into the 'pataecology.

Agave sculpture

Christian Thornton's summer residency at FoAM, to prototype an agave-and-glass sculpture.

Inner Garden

A new composition by Stevie Wishart, for human and vegetal voices, as a tribute to Hildegard von Bingen's Viriditas.

Arboreal identity

FoAM and Z33 invite Heath Bunting and An Mertens to discover how to create a legal identity for trees

Human-Plant Interactions in Borrowed Scenery

In his essay ‘Plan/Plant/Planet’ Terrence McKenna suggests that plants should become organisational principles for human society in the 21st century. At FoAM we’d like to test this premise through an Alternate Reality Narrative (ARN). In Borrowed Scenery we will conduct experiments with an alternate reality (past, future or parallel) where plants are a central aspect of human society. We hold up the magnifying glass to reveal ...