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2014-05-27

At the exhibition Vegetation as a political agent curated by Marco Scotini at the Parco d'Arte Vivente ( PAV), RozO is presenting a triptyque called "When vegetation is not decoration".

This project is speaking about the vegetation used as a political agent in the control of territories in the colonial and South post-colonial world. Vegetation is not only decorative at the scale of private gardens, it becomes a tool of planification and of management of the territory or on the contrary a tool for resistance.
In that case, it offers a possibility to escape from the colonial grid to disappear. Vegetation as also been used to create the conditions to live different and autonomous lives apart from state autorities as James Scott describes it in his book "The Art of not Being Governed" or as Philippe Zourgane describes it in his text "Architectural Free Zone". This installation at PAV is presenting in this  tryptique three uses of vegetation in Reunion Island, in Algeria and in Vietnam during the XXeme century. This work is realized only with archives. Vegetation can be a tool to conquer new territories  but also a precious help for the resistance struggles or simply allow to enjoy life out of any control.

Archive 1
The Green room (Sal Vèrt) - Vegetation is an anticapitalist tool 

The green room that will be built in the installation is an archive. It is the reconstruction of a temporary kind of space that was used to be built in Reunion Island by the popular classes since the abolition of slavery up to the XXth century. The green rooms were built for the celebration of important moments of family life as weedings, baptism, birthdays or kabars (parties). They were often built on squatted plots in the neighborhood or in one's own garden. The green room has a bamboo structure that is covered with braided coco leaves. The bamboos for the structure were cut in the countryside and the coco leaves for the cover were cut in the family, friends gardens, along the roads, along the streets or in public gardens. Once the celebration over, it is common that the bamboo canes are stocked for futur reuse and that braided coco leaves are used again for another use : protect young plants from the sun. Very often also, those green rooms are abandoned , the vegetatl elements dry in the sun and decay with the seasons.

Vegetation is used here as an anticapitalist tool to enjoy life. This architecture is free, it is built with free materials, it offers a free use on a free piece of land. It is built in a collaborative way with the family, friends, neighboors...

Tomorrow Archive 2 ...

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