After Baruchello: Agricultural Encounters in Contemporary Art

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Abstract

This chapter identifies a cultural turn towards political ecology, in the sense that Bruno Latour defines it, primarily due to the contentiousness within pre-established categories of art (or artifice) and nature (as a site of labour and perseverance). Following ‘the ecological thought’ of Timothy Morton via Arthur Schopenhauer’s problematic claim that art provides an escape route from reality to a space-time of pure ‘knowledge’, the chapter considers selected agricultural art projects by John Gerrard, Gianfranco Baruchello, Atelier Van Lieshout, Futurefarmers and Fernando García-Dory. Considering Morton’s observation that the essentialism we sometimes afford to an artwork is exactly what might help to deconstruct our delusions surrounding the nature/culture dichotomy, I argue this ‘non-knowledge’ is grounded in ‘ecomaterialism’, ‘postmedievalism’, and ‘uncivilization’ in order to think a reconfiguration of the limits of the everyday, the urban, and the rural for the Anthropocene.

In: Ben Stringer, ed. Rurality Re-imagined: Villagers, Farmers, Wanderers and Wild Things (Novato, California: ORO Editions/Applied Research & Design, 2018).

https://www.accpublishinggroup.com/uk/store/pv/9781940743349/rurality-re-imagined/ben-stringer/

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