fragment 2 the ruderal or toxic dreams
berlin, august 30th, 2021
with mun wai lee, franz rebele
franz rebele, biologist and wasteland-ecologist, takes us on a tour of a berlin industrial wasteland. we should keep the location secret so that we don't endanger it. ruderal comes from chunk or lump, in latin rudus, and refers to the agglomeration of rubble or construction debris from former industrial plants with the respective soil. raw soil areas usually have different elevations, are often toxic or polluted, and are populated with special communities of certain plants, animals, and fungi. landscapes, like this one, could develop, because the toxic or the poisoning protects the soil from investors exploitation(s) and so forests or wildernesses could develop over decades. with spontaneous growth of trees, whose seeds the wind or animals planted there, or with seeds that were already waiting in the soil, and "weed" grasses that filter the fine and coarse dust. organs of purification. toxic grounds as a defense against neoliberal exploitation? toxic future/s? mun wai does not know such landscapes from singapore.
or toxic past? what can the fallow ground in düsseldorf next to the main station tell us about the steel industry and its bombed-out ballast after the second world war, or about the demolished post office loading site where we showed the last IDEAL PARADISE in 2016? so we speculate about future and present on the rubble of past work.
grand central. but in 40 years there could be a forest there. a wilderness.
what if the more than 200 houses burned down during the semaine sanglante, at the end of may 1871 in paris had not been rebuilt, but the ruins of the commune were now urban forests? today maple, birch, oak, goldenrod, lesser celandine and solanum, the bittersweet nightshade with many other creatures enliven paris? - toxic areas, now revitalized wildernesses as a reminder of the commune, its visions and struggles.
time growing out of the ruins of the city?
wasteland next to the main station in düsseldorf, construction area for grand central