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Root Seeker

Editors’ Note:
It is difficult to distinguish true and false in the journey of the “root seeker." Driven by a new round of capitalist globalization, soil exploitation will flourish in the middle of this century just as the oil industry once did. From the fertile soils of the jungle and the robust circulation of a vast amount of foreign exchange, biodiverse exotic soils converge and accumulate in the “infrastructure farms” of developed countries. With the sudden outbreaks of super viruses, reduced crop yields and food crises have become all too commonplace. Following in the footsteps of an expedition team, root seeker attempts to find an antidote to the crises in areas that have yet to be exploited. As a descendant of the Derung ethnic group, she embarked to her homeland, Yunnan, which she had never explored before, to reach the long-lost paradise of which the elders spoke.

This is part of e-flux in Chinese Column, a collaboration between Heichi Magazine and e-flux journal, with curator and writer Xiaoyu Weng as the column’s guest-editor.

Root Seeker from e-flux journal #Cascades May 2021, read the original article here. Cascades is a collaboration between MAAT - Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology and e-flux Architecture. ​Translated by Jacob Zhang, co-edited by Yuan Fuca and Baichao Chen.

Feifei Zhou is a Chinese-born artist and architect. She co-edited Feral Atlas: The More-than-Human Anthropocene (2020) and was a guest researcher at Aarhus University Research on the Anthropocene. She is currently working as an Associate Lecturer in the Department of Architecture at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London.

Scene inside an “infrastructure farm.” Image by Feifei Zhou, 2021

Still from drone footage in Yunnan. Image by Feifei Zhou, 2021

Published: 2021.11.18