What would you do if your salad bit you back or started to talk? Eden? Plants between Science and Fiction, a multimedia exhibit about the role of plants in science fiction literature and film, invites you to engage in exactly this thought experiment.
Conceptualized by graduate students at the University of Münster in Germany, Eden is on display at the University of Arizona in Fall 2022. Featuring killer plants from outer space and utopian gardens of the future, the exhibit highlights poems, (graphic) novels, and films that are all about plant protagonists.
“We are excited to bring our exhibit to the U of A” said Katharina Scheerer, visiting scholar and Ph.D. candidate from the University of Münster who has headed the Eden project since its inception.
“We hope that it will give people new perspectives on plants from a variety of angles,” said Dr. Joela Jacobs, Assistant Professor of German Studies and co-founder of the Literary and Cultural Plant Studies Network, which is partnering on the exhibit and events.
By bringing together the natural sciences, visual culture, and literature, the curators ask us to pay attention to what we often consider to be mere scenery and examine our thinking about plants. In light of our current ecological crisis, an encounter with plants as intelligent beings who talk back might just enable us to imagine different ways of living together on our shared planet.
The exhibit will be shown across two spaces on the University of Arizona campus. Entry is free, and tours for classes and groups are available upon request.
- Exhibit I: Oct. 4 – Dec. 22 at the Poetry Center (1508 E. Helen St.), Tuesdays to Fridays, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturdays 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
- Exhibit II: Oct. 28 – Dec. 9 at the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (1215 E. Lowell St.), Mondays to Fridays, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
The exhibit will be accompanied by a series of events:
Oct. 11, 6:30 p.m.
Little Shop of Horrors: Film Screening and Discussion, with introduction by Jacobs and Scheerer
The Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd.
A presentation of the 2022 Tucson Humanities Festival
Nov. 5, 9 p.m. (doors 8 p.m., 21+, $12)
Eden Burlesque Show, featuring Tucson Libertine League
Nov. 16, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m.
“Super Carrots and Killer Vines: Plants between Science and Fiction,” Humanities Seminars Program lecture with Jacobs and Scheerer
UA Poetry Center, 1508 E. Helen St. and online at hsp.arizona.edu