Soil Conversations presents nine artistic propositions from South Africa and Germany, looking at the granularity of soil as material, our relationship to the ground on which we build life on and soil as a bearer of memory, identity and speculative futures.
The exhibition connects two geographical points - the Galerie im Körnerpark in Berlin and the Johannesburg Art Gallery in South Africa. Soil Conversations unfolds itself rhizomatically through the sharing of curatorial and artistic processes on our project website, the two physical exhibitions and through textual engagements of writers from both cities.
Soil Conversations is an exhibition that explores the relationship between humans and the environment, both in the digital and analogue spheres. The exhibition presents soil as a space of meaning, identity, and history, and questions the concept of linearity in favour of interstitial spaces. It looks at soil as a planetary boundary, a resource that has been
exploited, a territory that forms geography, and a mixture of nurture, trauma, and cycles of life.
The exhibition also explores the relationship between the analogue and digital, considering the digital as a space of pixelated dialectics where one can exist beyond the boundaries and borders defined by history and politics, but still not completely free from them. But the body remembers — even in the transition between particles and pixels, we carry the histories
inscribed into our corporealities into this digital terra nullius. Topics such as land, history, spirituality, and the body are integral to the artworks in Soil Conversations. The exhibition aims to engage with the speculative and to explore the plurality of the past and future scenarios, as a relationship between humans and the world, and as a defining position of the present moment.