Single screen video with sound
Red Palm Weevil – Fitri Shinebourne
Silk worm – Gretchen Egolf
Clothes moth – Clay Barnard Chodzko
Adaptation: Low-resolution on Vimeo
Adaptation shows a face or mask created from a conversation between three insects, a Red Palm Weevil (from within a palm frond), a Silk Worm (inside a cocoon) and Clothes Moth (within a silk scarf) apparently in a city plaza somewhere, just outside a nightclub. Together, whilst periodically admiring images of swaying palm trees, they chat about nation’s cosmetically enhancing their city centres with imported palm trees during the build up to hosting Olympic Games and how this hasty vanity planting facilitates the spread of Red Palm Weevil:
…we can then spread to eat these older more native ones too. I like this notion of the host here. Host plants, host country’s…Anyway, this national identity crisis which moves from self-consciousness to embarrassment after the game ends when they see their own palms wither and die…
The three insects move on to discuss previous examples of human folly involving bugs, focussing on James 1st’s plan to make England self-sufficient in silk production.
Silkworm: ...so, 10,000 black mulberry trees were planted. Black mulberries.
At which point they found out that the silk worm only eats the leaves of the white mulberry tree!
So the whole scheme was abandoned.
Palm weevil: What an idiot!
Clothes Moth: “Read the bloody manual!”
Adaptation, with its exploration of contamination and human generated environmental decay is part of a series of works (including Desert Island , We are Sorry , The Quarantine Ship and Like This) in Adam Chodzko’s major exhibition at Raven Row, London, We are Ready for Your Arrival , 2013, which unfolds as a series of events that arise from the apparent failure of a 60′ palm tree to arrive in time to be the central part of the exhibition.
The installation explores the materialisation, through objects, texts and images, of the processes of artistic creative production; its expectations, ambitions, coincidences, irrational leaps and failures. The manifestations of these experiences are then paralleled through their real and potential connections to environmental transformation and collapse.