My goal is to use creative tech to share information of urban edible or medicinal plants. With budget cuts, raising taxes, and health care reform adding to the ever increasing economic divide, as well as looming nuclear, and other apocalyptic and anthropogenic trends like climate change, understanding what plants are edible and medicinal are important. This information may determine if one will go hungry or be fed, or have the power to fight an infection, or improve the immune system. Knowing about urban edible plants may be a matter of survival.
I'm planning a project that includes members of the Best Buy Teen Tech Center at the Hennepin County Library downtown. It's an after school drop-in space. My task, part of an upcoming Artist Residency, at the Minneapolis Atheneum (upstairs from the Teen Tech Center), is to make their collection of botanical prints more accessible and relevant today. I love botanical prints and with a dedication to Museums as Sites for Social Action (MASS Action), makes me eager to decolonize that collection with creative tech. May members of the Teen Tech Center are experiencing homelessness, hunger, addiction, stress and poor health today - hopefully partaking in this project creates a life link to some or helps even one person know what to eat in a time of need, than this will have a positive impact.
I believe drawing urban wild foods with an urban wild style, in a VR graffiti simulation game called Kingspray (Infectious Ape), as well as perhaps creating a Soundcloud playlist of 2 minute songs inspired by the VR drawings of the collection, would help introduce and ignite wonder, while informing teens about potentially life-saving information today and for the future. The plants we will draw are the indigenous native plants that grow in the city's sidewalk cracks, along alleyways, and found at the bus stops the teens see along their path to school, where they stay, or find themselves now.