Carved to flow - Germination
reseeding back into the communities
Otobong Nkanga in dialogue with Emanuele Coccia
Organised by Expanding Academy
The artist Otobong Nkanga discusses with the philosopher Emanuele Coccia her ongoing project Carved to flow in its 3rd phase, ‘the Germination’. Carved to flow operates currently through a Land Foundation based in Akwa Ibom, Nigeria, which revitalizes land, soil, and living ecosystems through regenerative agriculture and the project spaceAkwa Ibom for contemporary art and new narratives in Athens, curated by Maya Tounta.
Carved to flow was Initiated in 2017 in Athens, in the frame of Documenta 14, as a site-specific installation that took the shape of a soap laboratory in collaboration with Maya Tounta, Vis Olivae, and an extensive network of local producers. In Kassel, the soap called O8 Black Stone made out of 7 different kinds of oil and butter from across the Mediterranean, Middle East, North and West Africa, and charcoal, havs been disseminated and sold through performative actions. The proceeds from the sale in Kassel and in the following years through a vast network of cultural institutions allowed Nkanga to set up and support the project space in Athens and the Land Foundation in Akwa Ibom.
Carved to Flow, as a support structure embedded in the social sphere, is an intricate, expansive, and continually transforming artistic process that seeks to create awareness around urgent questions related to land, soil, extraction, networked geographies, economic histories and material entanglements.
(Image: Otobong Nkanga, O8 Black Stone, 2017; A handmade, cold process, natural soap made of butters and oils from across the Mediterranean, Middle East, North and West Africa, fused together with water, lye and charcoal. Made for Carved to Flow Foundation)
This talk is part of ARTICULATE 2023 I ECOSYSTEMS.