ARTIST RESIDENCY, MUSEO DE ARTE MODERNO, CHILOÉ, CHILE
During an artist residency at MAM Chiloé, Chile, I documented the rudimentary movements used in the manual collection of “pelillo” algae. Agar, derived from Gracilaria Chilensis, sometimes called “green gold” or “pelillo”, is used in cosmetics, medicines, gelatins, and plastics, and is one of Chile’s major exports, mostly to Asian markets, and is at risk of extinction. A two-week artist residency at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Chiloé Island (2017), allowed me to do preliminary documentation and research of the landscape and human extraction activities such as harvesting of “pelillo”, salmon farming, etc. I am interested in the difficult contradiction between the culturally significant activity of harvesting “pelillo” (a practice that is over 14,000 years old), and the sustainability of this resource in the face of mounting, global demand.