The extinction survival archive #2

How to survive in the city, with Ann Van de Vyvere

The “Archive of Untold Stories” project landed at ZSenne Artlab again. This edition further investigated the the archive as a way of presenting stories. The Extinction Survival Archive started during a previous residency at ZSenne Artlab. The pandemic has turned the attention away from an impending problem: The tipping point of our climate, the inescapable ecological disaster if we don’t take action. The apocalypse hasn’t been repelled, so we might as wel think about survival in such circumstances. How can I leave my children, who only know the internet as a source of knowledge, the necessary information if electricity might not even be available?

Last edition the premise resulted in a naive humbling collection of books, for parents and children. Now, I’m looking for people who can share the knowledge to survive such an apocalypse. This week I had a walk and a talk with Ann Van de Vyvere. More than ten years ago already, she and Gosie Vervloessem setup workshops and walks in the city, to discover edible plants and kook up some food with it. Crucial information for doomsday preppers who want to survive in the city.

We kicked off with a stand off, using the theatre replicas Davis Freeman gathered over the years for several of his shows. (We met on his production of the Steven Sondheim musical ‘Assassins’) So he did an excerpt of his piece ‘What you need to know‘. But soon it got clear that the solutions for this doomsday scenario in the city will need a totally different approach of reflection and experimentation. Ann wholeheartedly joined our little plan to setup a group of people to reflect upon the issues and think about how we can setup experiments.

In the end we took her lessons to practice and composed a salad from the findings around our block.