VermiCulture Makers Club – Art exhibition

The show is over now, but the documentation can be viewed here.
Exhibition flyer Kentucky School of Art

Show Statement

The climate is catastrophic – what can one individual do?

Look to the worm.

The worm collaborates with other micro and macro organisms to turn what is rotting into rich soil. The worm joins forces with a colony that works in complex, interdependent ways with thousands of other organisms to create an ecosystem.

I live and work with domesticated technological and biological beings that sustain me aesthetically, gastronomically, intellectually and emotionally. Emitting waste, I seek co-habitation with creatures that make use of it. I like to be reminded that my human existence depends on interdependence. As an artist, I construct systems and situations for animals, electronics and humans to interact. Perhaps our relationships work with less friction when greased with the right interface?

Composting worms can play a powerful role in helping us reduce our greenhouse gas output, but their power to repulse us is a barrier. There is a lot of cultural work to do if we are to develop symbiotic relationships with them. The VermiCulture Makers Club is a way to invite other humans (you) to participate in this interesting challenge of changing our cultural minds around worms. Can we develop an appreciation of them by observing them on webcams as they do their incredible waste-disposal work, or by enjoying the plants that are living on nutrients created by worms? Can worms enter the space of our homes and develop collaborative relationships with us more easily when their habitats are embedded in hydroponic plant towers, or hidden inside teddy bears, furniture, kitchen cookware or paper shredders? What would you try instead? I hope you will join me in prototyping a future that appreciates our shared world with other living things. We start with the worm, and we work together to create new culture and new ecosystems.

– Amy M. Youngs