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Invasion Ecology


01/06/24 – 15/08/24
Opening Times
Sunday, 11:00 – 15:00
Mon–Wed, Closed
Thu–Fri, 10:00 – 15:00
Saturday, 11:00 – 15:00
Free entry
Invasion Ecology is a season of contemporary land art on Dartmoor that questions what we mean by ‘native’ and what it means to belong - reimagining more empathic connections between humans, plants, animals and landscapes.

At the centre of the programme is Invasion Ecology, a group exhibition on display from June 1 - Aug 10 at Southcombe Barn, an arts space and gardens located in Widecombe-in-the-Moor, Dartmoor. Artists include Ingrid Pollard, Iman Datoo, Hanna Tuulikki, Ashish Ghadiali, Fern Leigh Albert and Ashanti Hare, with works spanning installation, performance, moving image and photography.

The exhibition opens on 1 June, coinciding with the National Garden Scheme, when Southcombe gardens are also open to the public. The gardens, which form the backdrop to this programme, are a former plant nursery, known for their ‘native’ wildflower meadows and contrasting juxtaposition of ‘exotic’ varieties of trees and plants.

The wider programme includes decolonial discussions and workshops from exhibiting artists, as well as authors, researchers and gardeners working with the exhibition’s themes, both in person and online. On 15 June, Ashanti Hare brings their sell-out performance, first commissioned by the Royal Albert Memorial Museum (RAMM) in Exeter, to a live environment at Southcombe Barn where this piece was developed during their residency. Conceived around the River Exe, Hare performs ‘River That Never Rests Iteration II’, as a sentient river which becomes “the watcher who connects the physical with documented histories of Exeter and the wider south west; other worlds; the many oral histories of global majority people and wildlife that travel to and through it”.

On 22 June, community herbalist Mariam Mohamed hosts a practical workshop challenging botanical languages and colonial systems of knowledge production. This sensory-based session draws on perception, intuition and oral storytelling as a way to develop deeper relationships with plants as medicinal and spiritual allies.

A series of participatory performances, developed by Radical Ecology, will look at how and why the language of native and invasive species in our gardens became so pervasive. This performance will tour across Devon and Cornwall including Exeter University, Thelma Hulbert Gallery, KARST, the Eden Project and Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange.

The full programme of in-person and online talks will be released in due course, via Southcombe Barn’s and Radical Ecology’s website and social media.

For more information:

radicalecology.earth / @radicalecology
southcombebarn.com/events @southcombebarn