Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Political boundaries start with private property of land protected and defined by force. Real state borders are usually defined by gardens. Modern gardeners have become the urban and industrialized version of peasants and artists. They work for the owners of the land. Southern California is distinct by its beautiful gardens. Workers who have to cross these political and real state boundaries usually tend to these gardens. They own their means of production and have become small entrepreneurs. These are sleek power tools. They are functional and symbolic objects. They pollute and make noise but we depend on them precisely to create the necessary green areas and artificial nature of the city at a low cost.
The Garden of Earthly Delights is a mechanic ballet where the pastoral and the industrial clash and depend on each other. The aesthetic machine is a contradictory means of expression and an end in itself. It is customized technology at the service of art, culture and politics.
Originally presented at “Mixed Feelings,” USC Fischer Gallery, Los Angeles, 2002. Now in the collection of the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago. Original music made with gardening tools: Gabriela Ortiz. Hydraulic engineer and mechanics: Salvador “Chava” Muñoz. With the original participation of Jaime Alemán (vice president of ALAGLA). Thanks to Adrian Alvarez and ALAGLA (Association of Latin American Gardeners of Los Angeles).