Green Wave | Paris
Fondation EDF, Paris, France
For the exhibition Green Wave, curated by Paul Ardenne for the EDF Foundation (March 17 to July 19, 2020) Lucy + Jorge Orta present their latest work, the film Symphony for Absent Wildlife. Green Wave unites for the first time in France, an international rooster of artists engaged in the ecological combat. Works presented explore the process of adaptation that humanity is currently undergoing and remind us of the essential role that art has to play in the climate transition, through its potential to ignite our imagination.
Symphony for Absent Wildlife draws together series of performances staged in Banff National Park, and the cities of Calgary, Milan and London, since 2014. The film weaves a story of loss through the history of the point-blanket, an exchange commodity between First Nations peoples and the early European trappers and traders. The felt point-blanket capote, woven in the UK and traded for beaver fur in Canada, gradually effaced one cultural identity, to install a ‘democratic’ shared narrative. Felt is also the material used for the orchestra’s costume. It is shaped to depict birds and animals connected with the spirit belief system of the indigenous peoples in Canada. These creatures –bison, wolves, eagles– hunted to near extinction, were once abundant across the Albertan plains. The symphony is played on bird-whistles and recounts the cycle of disappearance as the dawn-chorus closes with a heart-wrenching silence. Watch showreel here.