Fields Part 1 
Hohenheim University, Department of Plant Nutrition
Ten years after
the first Revival Field, Mel Chin initiates its continuation
Revival Fields in its 'Stuttgart Version' . This time the artist
is working in link with
Hohenheim University, Department of Plant Nutrition.
This is the first
project which will not only use hyperaccumulators, but the next category
of plants, the aptly named 'superaccumulators'.
These new plants, developed jointly with the US, France and Germany,
have shown a major leap in the amount of power to draw quantities of
heavy metals from the soil. The implications should be understood in
terms of time, implying a more realizable, human scale dimension to
the overall duration of a soil-cleansing project.
Planting in different
fields + greenhaus
The planting will
take place in different fields, including the University and polluted
test fields donated by farmers near the Neckar (see
information on planting in Neckarwestheim 4.7.2001), and as an index
in the Künstlerhaus Stuttgart. After the harvest and tests,
in the end of 2001, the project will be presented in an exhibition form
by Mel Chin. Before that time, beginning in November, developed over
the website in December, and extending through summer 2001, haus.0 will
be making available in the Künstlerhaus fourth floor various materials
from the earlier project, the planting
index, and a planned discussion on this project by Mel
privately owned 'brands'
The Revival Fields
project offers the first field tests undertaken outside the US. It is
hoped through the actual tests that these new plants will lead to more
effective, satisfying results within a shorter time period. Among other
aspects that have changed in a decade since the first Revival
Field, is that today the new breed of plants are all becoming
highly guarded, privately owned 'brands', the access of these for research
is difficult and costly.
continues aspects of Chin's specific enquiry and modelling of artistic
practice in terms of a transformative ecology. Thus it presents as a
project the scientific results which in the frame of 'art' now ten years
onwards still provides the possibility that science research can receive
field test results on these valuable plants, outside of the conventional
hightech laboratory [
See also website 'art+science on Mel Chin' (www.satorimedia.com/fmraWeb/chin.htm)
]. Through the plant is also seen a transformation of informations
forming links to different publics from university to artist's space.
For more context detail see interview with Mel
Fields Part 2: "greenhaus" 
Chins Stuttgart Revival Fields project extends into its
next phase with the introduction of a greenhouse into the 4th floor
of Künstlerhaus. Also this phase of the project takes place in
collaboration with the University
of Hohenheim, Department of Plant Nutrition (department website).
The new greenhouse starts up the hyperaccumulator
plants seedlings required for the next phase, spring planting in
the selected test fields. The artist introduced a design for the new
greenhouse by adding and refitting the spiral staircase-turned- sculpture
of the 4th floor. This staircase began life in 1984 as part of the renovation
of the Künstlerhaus. The architect introduced it as a link between
the public "communication" floor (the groundfloor café) and the
Künstlerhaus first floor. The idea was limited by the reality of
the café, mixing environments, and inevitably, the desired flow
and link never functioned. Thus the spiral stairway was soon reduced
to being a large support for planters, and finally dismantled to storage
in the cellar. In 1999, the haus.0 program reintroduced the stairway
in its 4th floor structure.
design for a greenhaus reflects the haus.0 program philosophy to constantly
work with and add new meaning to the past / future traces of histories
evident in the institutional identity, whether by earlier or current
programming or architectural structures. The metal staircase with it's
spiral form functions well as the interior supporting system for planters.
While it humorously recalls what the staircase had already ended up
serving as in the past, despite the best planning, it also recalls the
point of the greenhaus and its new plants, in terms of the ecological
project, as each supporting step has a metal zinc-coating, an old process
that directly recalls the hazardous byproducts of industry. The staircase
in the transformation to the new greenhaus also recalls the intention
of having communication and links between the participating institutions
and artists underway.
Fields Part 3: the planting (Neckarwestheim)