On June 18 Zheng Bo and Arjen Mulder met at Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam for a talk about plants, plant rights and plant politics, and how to communicate with a species we humans depend upon. A registration of the event is available to watch on Other Futures Channel.
The event was organised on occasion of the translation of one of the chapters in Mulder's book 'Vanuit de plant gezien', sponsored by Het Nieuwe Instituut. A pdf of the chapbook titled 'The Internal and External World of Plants' can be downloaded here.
Zheng Bo, an artist, writer and teacher living on Lantau Island near Hong Kong, is well known for his ecosexual film in 4 chapters 'Pteridophilia', that connects queer ferns and queer people. In the talk he introduces the Daoist term 'wuwei', "non-coercive action that is in accordance with . . . the particular focus of things contained within one's field of influence."
Where Zheng Bo uses film, performance and drawing to express his relations to other species, Dutch biologist and media theorist Arjen Mulder uses language to bridge the gap between himself and plants. His thinking was triggered by the 19th century vitalist philosopher Schelling, who thinks along with nature instead of in opposition to it.