Annalee Davis credit Camilo Pachon 1
Talks & Seminars

Keynote Speech: Plotting Against the Plantation by Annalee Davis

Join us for a keynote speech from Bar­ba­di­an visu­al artist, cul­tur­al activist and writer Annalee Davis.

This is a Radical Ecology event in partnership with KARST and The Arts Institute at the University of Plymouth.

Barbadian visual artist, cultural activist and writer Annalee Davis was commissioned by Facing Our Past, a project from the National Trust for Scotland, to research the connections between their properties and the history of British Empire-era slavery. Her response to that project was an investigation of the shared histories of the Scottish Highlands and Barbados, resulting in a limited edition series of prints titled A Hymn to the Banished.

The history of British imperialism imposed banishment to small faraway islands, including Barbados, and generated suffering. Yet, deep knowledge and a desire to heal profound traumas elicited practices that relied on ancient traditions connected to the land and the remembering of sacred rites. Annalee’s bespoke box lined with a fishnet captures and holds handmade books, a scroll of banished women, a container of charms, and other pieces. This limited edition artwork explores notions of rupture, friction, entanglements, and the need to belong in strange places through rituals of incantations, charms, and the desire to repair the ills of British Empire-era indentureship and slavery.

The artist will share two of her recently completed plots – living apothecaries grown in Barbados and in Sharjah, UAE – acknowledging the regenerative potential of the biosphere and its inherent capacity for healing at the agricultural, botanical and psycho-spiritual levels. These works suggests future strategies for repair and thriving while investigating the role of botanicals and living plots as sites of refusal, counter-knowledge, community and healing.

Join us to hear Annalee speak about these commissions as collective responses to centuries of social disruption caused by the 'Plantationocene' – including the forced transplantation of hundreds of thousands of human beings, along with their systems of knowledge, ritual, and culture, to foreign islands in the West Indies. She will explore notions of rupture, friction, banishment, entanglements, and the need to belong through rituals of incantations, charms and the desire to heal.

The talk will be followed by a Q&A session facilitated by Dr Sana Murrani of the University of Plymouth. Participants are encouraged to continue the evening at KARST gallery where the Against Apartheid exhibition, curated by Ashish Ghadiali, where Annalee Davis will be showing her work.
Annalee Davis credit Camilo Pachon 1