Microreview: PlanteSorcières – External and internal uses of knowledge copy

Microreview Koehle 1
Device for transporting plants, image: PlanteSorcières
Microreview Koehle 2
Cyanotype, from the zine series Plantes of Resistance, image: PlanteSorcières
Microreview Koehle 3
Workshop Caldo de cultivo / Breeding ground at Gessnerallee, Zurich, 2019, image: PlanteSorcières
Microreview Koehle 4
Installation at Espace récréatif de la Grenette, Lausanne, 2019, image: PlanteSorcières
Microreview Koehle 5
During trips through Valais, image: PlanteSorcières
Date
2021 February
Subtitle
Petra Köhle reviews Caterina Giansiracusa and Andrea Herrera. PlanteSorcières, a multidisciplinary project that started in 2018 (ongoing) at various locations and resulting in diverse publication forms.
Type
microreview
Author / Publisher
Petra Köhle for NewsLibrary
Author Info

Petra Köhle is an artist and researcher based in Zurich and works collectively with Nicolas Vermot-Petit-Outhenin. Together they conduct the research project Institutional memory: political aesthetics of the gift at EDHEA where they also co-direct the master’s program MAPS – Master of Arts in Public Spheres. https://edhea.ch/annuaire/petra-koehle

Language

English

Also published here

Newsletter No. 31

Instagram @sarn_switzerland

Reviewed Publication

Caterina Giansiracusa and Andrea Herrera. PlanteSorcières, a multidisciplinary project that started in 2018 (ongoing) at various locations and resulting in diverse publication forms, including: collective workshop Caldo de cultivo / Breeding ground at Gessnerallee, 2019; exhibition and performative intervention during Volumes, Kunsthalle Zürich, 2019; self-published zine series Plantes of Resistance, 2018 - (ongoing).

Links

Website PlanteSorcières: https://plantasbrujas.art.blog

Collective Workshop during Horchneim Triennale, 2019: https://siluetas.coalitioncyborg.org/

Interview with Germaine Cousin, 2018: https://vimeo.com/388991703

In Switzerland, the bloody traces of witch hunts reach far into the 18th century. Yet the atrocities then carried out have been largely banished from collective memory and their effects on the transmission of feminine lore are scarcely taken into account. Andrea Herrera (based in Conception, Chile) and Caterina Giansiracusa (based in Turin, Italy), initiated the multidisciplinary project PlanteSorcières in 2018 to pursue the relationship between ancestral knowledge and witch hunts. On a series of trips through Valais the artists held conversations – including one with Germaine Cousin, a healer of over 90 years – and learned about the use and cultivation of medicinal plants. “External use: fresh leaves directly on the wound.” That is just one of the indications we find for the plant Achillea millefolium on the website of PlanteSorcières.

PlanteSorcières takes place in diverse forms and collaborations: workshops, rituals, performances, sculptural interventions and zines. Each tells anew the stories of forgotten voices and persecuted practices. For example, under the title Caldo de cultivo / Breeding ground, a collaborative workshop took place at Gessnerallee in Zurich in 2019 in which hybridization, bastardization und contamination were applied as methods to collectively produce a zine. PlanteSorcières connects places, histories and people, practicing the transmission of knowledge as an act of shared resistance. In this sense: “Achillea millefolium - internal use: the whole plant as an herbal tea (fresh or dried), useful for the menstrual cycle and after childbirth. It is also known for its antispasmodic properties.”