About the workshop
Do you have any friends or collaboration partners that are not human? In Metabolic Union workshop, we formed a close friendship with the Oyster Mushroom – Pleurotus Ostreatus – to create artworks and combat waste. Spent coffee grounds, discarded cardboard, and abandoned textiles became part of the mushroom’s menu! We employed a variety of textile and sculpting techniques to engage with the waste and the mushrooms. Following the workshop, each participant took home their own oyster mushroom artwork-pet-experiment.
The workshop was also visited by oyster mushroom expert Rihards Grāvis from the mushroom lab “Spora” located in Cesis, Latvia. Rihards introduced the participants more closely to the oyster mushroom cultivation process and demonstrated oyster mushrooms at various stages of growth.
Inspired by our current era as a spatial and performative event forcing us to re-evaluate concepts, hierarchies, and relations, Annike Flo (Norway) makes work based around giving up space and decentering the human in encounters with other organisms and entities. By facilitating encounters between herself, human participants, and others such as the oyster mushroom, microbes, or specific habitats, her works open up to new and strange relations and worlds. Flo works with the monster as a companion, invoking processes out of control, conglomerate, and symbiosis and her practice spans installation, scenography, costume, and artistic participation in research projects.