What if the South is here? In a potential scenario where our climate could get warmer and “tropicalised”, can objects that come from the tropics but are kept in European museums, transgress their current passive state and untranslatability? Can forms and ideas from the South contained within the objects lead us to future adaptations for new climate conditions? How can we re-translate the knowledge and social relations carried by objects from the South to a European context without privileging modern conceptual paradigms?
During the workshop, we investigate this scenario and focus on objects in the context of Europe that are connected to us with various global warming transformations. In order to, in some ways, understand the new landscape by sharing knowledge from the objects. By looking at the archive of the Tropenmusuem in Amsterdam the southern objects and their current context, it draws out new translation of tropical archives in museums collections on the history of colonial trade and exchange. There will be a collaborative workshop to re-read the tropical objects creating a new atlas of the objects from the southern hemisphere. The audience is invited to learn and engage with this speculative landscape. Through a process of a materialised collaborative moment of thinking together to create a speculative new landscape by retranslating the objects from the archive.
The workshop ’Tropical, Objects, Turns’ is organised as part of Elsewheres Within Here curated by Jo-Lene Ong. This group exhibition investigates what we welcome and what we refuse in marking the boundaries of what we call ‘home’—our bodies, houses, and countries, through stories that trace the errant movements of ‘domestic’ plants, animals, objects, and symbols. These works in infiltrate and invert bordered positions of ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ to suggest a more elemental and fluid sense of belonging. The workshop is presented by Aram Lee in collaboration with The New Alphabet School (2019-2021), Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW), Berlin.
Aram Lee (born 1986 in Seoul, South Korea) lives and works in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
As an artist Lee’s focus has been on reinterpreting and repurposing the matter found within institutions. Her critical approach and research reconnect the suspended sequences of an object to the timeline of static things. Her performative events, and video installations reshape the complex trajectories of objects and images into complex socio-political systems by shifting power structure.