A garden as a joint project of artists Matyáš Chochola and Rustan Söderling and garden architects Mirka Svorová and Jakub Finger (Atelier Partero). The combination of two alternative ideas about the future of the world without people. Fascination with the visual power of what has remained of the iconic places of great civilizations on the one hand, and faith in the revitalizing power of nature on the other. The external area of the former store is progressively converted into a garden used by our visitors.
“If we accept the theory that an apocalypse is already in progress in the form of slow, inconspicuous changes (climate and social), the artists’ garden in PLATO is an attempt to approach the dark future of mankind in a positive way, and to provide what we have destroyed with enough time for renewal. We should get used to the fact that some things can still be done, while others can’t. The work on the garden of the future never ends, but one has to start somewhere…
The garden of the future was opened with an initiation performance by Matyáš Chochola. In a condensed form, it indicated and staged wild scenes which could take place in the ruins of a deserted supermarket in the future. Rustan Söderling in his video Tanhäuser Gate (Not Really Now Not Anymore) takes the viewer on a tour of the ruins of FamilyMart, a temple of late capitalism, supplemented with a Zen master‘s commentary. The apocalyptic scenario is represented by the screens of digital billboards overgrown with vegetation, projecting commercials in an endless loop with traces of an extinct civilization. What once stirred desire in people has lost its function.
Artists and architects join forces in the installation to outline and accelerate the process of primary succession, i.e. a moment in which plants take roots in the garden preparing the ground for the birth of new biological communities. When building this garden, we can observe an analogy with the newly settled space of PLATO. The creators of the Garden of the Future envisage a gradual transformation of the vegetation until the plant community gets stabilized at a certain point. The accomplishment of their vision is probably a question of decades, possibly even hundreds of years.”
Daniela & Linda Dostálková, Marek Pokorný
Atelier Partero (established in 2006) is headed by partners Mirka Svorová (1977, CZ) and Jakub Finger (1983, CZ). They studied garden and landscape architecture at Mendel University, Brno. They have won several Garden of the Year awards and other prizes. The studio focuses on a variety of projects, with the private garden remaining the focal point (from small atriums to landscape units covering several hectares). They live and work in Brno.
Matyáš Chochola (1986, CZ) graduated from the Department of Painting II headed by Vladimír Skrepl at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, and was a resident in the studios of Thomas Zipp, Florian Pulmhösl and Zbigniew Libera. He is the winner of the 2016 Jindřich Chalupecký Prize. His art chiefly involves the installation and performance media and creates a multi-faceted universe with the artist’s figure as an inseparable part. Matyáš Chochola lives and works in Prague.
Rustan Söderling (1984, SE/NL) graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, and is currently a resident of the De Ateliers postgraduate programme. His work is typified by the combination of the new media, graphic design and, in particular, 3D video. He partially copies the real world, but always with emphasis on the nearest dystopian future. Rustan Söderling lives and works in Amsterdam.