Forest Rising: Marjetica Potrc

This art exhibition is a mixture of anthropology and art, with some heavy philosophizing about architecture and the environment. The Slovenian artist Marjetica Potrc spent two months travelling in western Brazil, where the rainforest is in danger of being destroyed by cattle ranchers and others who want to cut down the trees. But it is not completely a sad story. The Brazilian government has allotted land to local inhabitants for sustainable use. She learned about the small rural communities and how they are managing their own areas of the rainforest and protecting it. The natives are self-sufficient and use solar power to run computers t.v.'s and satellite dishes in order to keep in touch with the rest of the world. They build primary schools to educate their children locally and maintain viable communities.

Her work reflects this visit and replicates a part of Xapuri, a small town in Acre. The three dozen fragrant tree trunks are topped by a platform with a model school that has solar panels and a satellite dish. On the wall there are drawings telling the story and depicting projects and ideas such as: " It's not about architecture--it's about food and water". A satellite is suspended from the gallery ceiling. There is also a video featuring a long conversation with the artist. Forest Rising shows how rural living can offer a positive model for the future; a community that is both self-supporting and globally connected. :: Barbican

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