Within the theme of Manifesta 12, Radical Gardening, the garden as commons was for me a way to explain or change the perspective on influential societal matters in Palermo. The Orto Botanico, the botanical garden, could be seen as a metaphor for the intersecting routes of people, in the same way as they have crossed paths from the age of Enlightenment and Colonialism up to this date.
Understanding the obsession to classify and collect species in the founding years of the botanical garden, during this period of Enlightenment, helped me to unlock the layers of acts against the plantcitizens of the Garden. The Orto Botanico hosts many of these imported citizens: foreign seeds, rare plants, andpseudo-indigenous species, who have been renamed andordered in rigid assemblies, much alike blocks in a larger city.
With this project, I attempt to lay beside me the role of (pseudo-)scientist and take up the position of the architect as listening ear. Listening, conversing, and informing myself, without judging, enabled me throughout this journey to collect evidences for the acts against the citizens and to voice their current state.