Kemmuna Nation

Fragmenta Malta

In line with the constitutions of the Republic of Ecuador and Bolivia that recognize Pachamama (Mother Earth) as a legal entity with its own rights and responsibilities relative to the state, Kemmuna Nation expounds on the concept of a non-human nation in which interactions between nature and human beings are coordinated. Achieving this first necessitates viewing nature as a political agent capable of sovereignly defending the rights of the non-human agents that comprise it.

In 2018 I was invited by FRAGMENTA Malta to present this project by taking over the island of Comino. Several buildings were put to use. The program included a declaration of independence speech, a lecture on Blockchain and Kemmuna Coin cryptocurrency, and a short tour of Comino’s lichen ecosystem. An interactive sound installation and a sound walk were presented in Comino’s abandoned bakery.

“October 28th will be the date: nature declares its own independency. Plants, animals and minerals will unite to build the most powerful nation in the world, leaving behind times of plunder and exploitation through men. This will be the day that the world order will take a new shape. Join us to be witness of the birth of Kemmuna Nation”, Mario Asef announces. In the age of the Anthropocene, the end is near. The “ideal of a shared world no longer exists”, political philosophy has lost its language, globalization is experiencing a negative reversal. Now, the earth starts fighting back. Kemmuna Nation speculates with the idea of a global nation constituted by non-humans entities, which organize themselves creating their own economical and political system based on the structures of specific pre-existing interconnections between species.

Abandoned bakery –sound installation–

Abandoned bakery –sound installation–

Abandoned bakery –sound installation–

Abandoned bakery –sound installation–

Abandoned bakery –sound installation–

The foundation on which the system structures itself is played out on the mineral level contained in the soil, which is connected with different species of plants through an underground network of mycorrhizal fungi. This system generates nutrients for insects and animals, including humans. In this way and considering the amount of plants, which are being eaten by those, mycorrhizal fungi get an overview of the animal population (also by communicating with other fungi growing on animal corpses and feces).

Martin Galea de Giovanni lecture about lichen’s network

Lichens

Thus, the mycorrhizal network administrates life on the planet by exchanging nutrients and information through carbon dioxide. With the help of lichen, which has also a fugi component, Kemuna Nation can build biomonitors for air pollution. Many lichen species have large geographical ranges, allowing study of pollution gradients over long distances. This information torrent can be measured by sensors on the ground and interpreted by a central computer, which, through an algorithm, determines the value of a cryptocurrency. This new currency is called Kemmuna Coin, and will be used by humans to pay transactions with the earth. All raw material taken by humans from Kemmuna Nation need to be retributory paid with Kemmuna Coins. Violations of law will also be charged in Kemmuna Coins. In this way pollution and explotation of nature can be a factor that altered the value of that monetary exchage between mankind and nature. Constituting so a self-regulated system, that also regulates the human factor of the system.

Terence Cassar lecture about Blockchain – Kemmuna Coin –

Watch the documentary about this project here:

 

Konsum der Landschaft

Spreewald Brandenburg

Under the catchword “consumption” artist Mario Asef developed for the Aquamediale 11 two projects dealing with processes of landscape usage and transformation. On the Lübbener Schlossplatz he appropriates an area of the park in order to set up his own brick-making production. He mixes local iron-ocher mud with cement for the production of bricks and tests the results for sustainability of use in building construction.

The focus of the work was on the so-called “Brown Spree”: As a late consequence of coal mining, iron hydroxide dissolves from the soil and colors the Spree river in ocher of varying intensity. Fish, plants and microorganisms die off. Every day about 8.5 tonnes of iron oxide mud (ocher mud) flows into the Spree river, while it is not yet clear how large the environmental damage will be for the ecotourism region. In a daily Sisyphean work excavators clean the waterways while the material accumulates unused at their edges.

Parallel to this, Mario Asef developed in cooperation with Edelmond Chocolatiers GmbH a “geological cake” that reproduces the specific geological composition of the Spreewald soil in chocolate, vanilla, marzipan, and icing. The cake is been served to customers at Edelmond’s restaurant during Aquamediale 11 festival.

Workshop at Luckau’s primary school.

Graphic of coal mining pit with accumulation of iron hydroxide on the base level.

Berliner Zeitung – Die Lausitz als Kuchen (German)