Unendliche Kolonien/Infinite Colonies

To conclude their residency at Künstlerhaus Büchsenhausen, Wolfgang Konrad and Ursula Hansbauer presented the first part of the audiobook Infinite Colonies as part of a spatial installation. The experimental audio play deals with the commodification and control of plant gene resources.

At the center of the work is the international network of plant genebanks The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), which was founded in the 1970s by the Rockefeller Foundation, the Ford Foundation and the World Bank among others. CGIAR is now the leading organization for both the control of plant gene resources and the distribution of biotechnology in “developing countries”. One of this network’s projects is a catastrophe-proof bunker on the island of Spitzbergen, where they intend to store up to 4.5 million plant seeds. Along with the World Bank, the main sponsors of the project are private companies, who will thereby secure for themselves an unrestricted access to global genetic resources.

The Infinite ColoniesConcluding Presentation (installation and audiobook audiobook consists of a series of fictional narratives on colonial plant collection expeditions of artists and scientists in the 17th century up until the global construction of gene banks today.

Ursula HANSBAUER (*1973 in Salzburg) and Wolfgang KONRAD (*1974 in Graz) are visual artists and filmmakers who live and work in Vienna. Both studied at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna (class of Renée Green). Their collaborative projects include, among others: Forst (2004, film, prizewinner at Diagonale 2005), Niemandsland (2005, exhibition at Galerie 5020 Salzburg) and Koloniale Saat (2008, exhibition at MUSA, Vienna).


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