artist in residence Botanical Gardens Zuidas PJ Roggeband
From Oktober 2016 to February 2017 PJ Roggeband is the first artist in residence in the Botanical Gardens Zuidas.
Working in a small building on Spider Island in the back of the gardens he is developing his studio for Work Out Gardens (Uitleentuinen) in which he explores ideas of mobile landscapes and wearable green. In the hortus he sets out to explore which role concentrated forms of nature play in the stone environment of the Zuidas for which he takes inspiration from the collection of lithops (living stones) and the Pnjing garden. He is developing a Loan Garden (Uitleentuin) consisting of various prototypes which will be based in the Hortus as well as distributed in the direct environment in collaboration with offices on the Zuidas who can borrow the gardens for a specific period of time. The work proces will be made visible for the visitor of the botanical garden through presentation, excursions in the gardens and a publication. PJ will be present regulary in the gardens and available for dialogue with plants and humans alike.
The pilot of the project UITLEENTUIN (‘flexgarden for flexspace’) started a couple of weeks ago at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. At the first evaluation, employees were very excited; Written promising words (“with a fleet garden, the ice broke immediately”), even poems and gave the gardens nicknames. And following this test the first order has been placed!
At many offices, the cozy, healthy greenery has disappeared through the introduction of the flex work spaces. But fortunately, there is now the phenomenon EXTENDEDLY developed by PJ Roggeband who has been working as an artist in residence at the adjacent Botanic Garden Zuidas. At a central location in a department are various models of portable gardens set up. One can choose a handy garden and take it to the workplace. At the end of the afternoon the gardens will be restored.
The fact that greenery in the office has a major influence on the well-being of the people who work there has been widely demonstrated in all kinds of scientific research. In collaboration with Kristine Steenbergh, Associate Professor of English Literature and affiliated with the Environmental Humanities Center, this trial was launched on the 13th floor of the VU. In addition to the ‘flextuinen for flexplekken’, artist PJ Roggeband has launched a special seed mix under the names ZUIDASGROEN and SJOEMELZAAD and in collaboration with Katja Kwastek, Professor of Modern History of Art, develops a COLLEGETUIN that educates gray college rooms.