Co-cultivating Experimentations

Сбор урожая, совхоз «Гигант», 1949, www.russiainphoto.ru

Commons are defined by the existence of a shared property, in the form of a shared natural or social wealth—lands, waters, forests, systems of knowledge, capacities for care—to be used by all commoners, without any distinction, but which are not for sale. Equal access to the necessary means of (re) production must be the founda- tion of life in the commons. This is important because the existence of hierarchical relations makes commons vulnerable to enclosures. (Silvia Federici, "Feminism and the Politics of the Commons")

Today, confused by loss of wisdom in changing social ties, I thought of "co-cultivation" as a descent into the artistic realm, offering art forms and collaborative methods of learning from land. "Co-cultivation" reflects the history of village life - its yesterday, today and future - by placing the land as a symbolic and material object at its centre.

The essence of the term is based on a perception of land as more than just soil or territory. This understanding embraces a global dimension seeing the land as a common home for all life both human and non-human. At the same time, it also takes on a local character, becoming memory, heritage and a view of the past, providing a basis for the expansion of artistic practices in the face of contemporary transformations.

"Co-cultivation" goes beyond the notion of cultivation as cultivation and soil preparation for agriculture. It becomes not only a method of communication with the land, but also an artistic practice, bringing together different fields of everyday knowledge such as tending gardens, visiting forest, preserving food, and communal cooking. Here, the land becomes the basis for solving economic problems, where the community can manage resources. 

Many villagers face challenges such as land grabbing, climate injustice and limited access to resources. Artistic research in this area includes land experiments, combining culture, agriculture and ecology.

Land, soil, collective stewardship and memory become central elements of an artistic approach to the term. "Co-cultivation" learns how cultural production can reimagine the relationship with the land. The methods propose new utopias by reconstructing notions of the land based on knowledge of humans and non-humans living on it.

Silvia Federici, "Feminism and the Politics of the Commons", p.96