Video projection; live performance. In the video, three performer-operators play a game of broken telephone with two texts and a cassette walkman. For the performance, the video is projected along with live manipulation of the audio track recorded on the walkman.
Materials: Boston Harbour Island Ferry; Georges Island; Winona LaDuke’s “The Ethics of Collecting”; Newcomb’s Guide to Wildflowers; cassette tape recorder; three women; wind
Transmission: A Botany of Decolonization is a prosthetic device that aspires to intervene into the trauma of colonial relations through immersive engagements with texts, sounds, and landscapes. Its presentation format combines video and audio recordings, live performance, and theoretical writing. Designed for Boston’s shoreline, an important historical site for both colonial encounter and militarization more generally, the prosthetic disrupts colonial epistemologies through a confusion of texts and sounds. Layered recordings of “The Ethics of Collecting” by Winona LaDuke and excerpts from Newcomb’s Guide to Wildflowers draw connections between the seeing, naming, and claiming of Western botany and archaeology and the ongoing violence of colonial power relations. Soundscapes from key points along Boston’s shoreline suggest that the trauma of colonial relations is shared by humans and nonhumans alike, and become extensions of our sensory apparatus that enable new ways of knowing.
Download the full text component of this project.