Red Roots / Green Lands

Racines rouges / Sols verts

2015, DHC/ART, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Photos: Maria Ezcurra
Workshop given in collaboration with the Department of Education of DHC/ART for the exhibition IMAGINE BRAZIL, using various recovered and recycled materials.

The workshop Red Roots / Green Lands invites participants to reflect on the historical and cultural roots of Brazil through the symbol of the pau-brasil (brazilwood) tree. This tree gave the country its name and is inextricably linked to its colonial history. An abundant resource when Portuguese colonizers arrived in the 16th century, brazilwood was rapidly and intensely exploited by the Portuguese – through the labour of indigenous and African slaves – in order to extract red dye used by the European textile industry.

For the duration for the workshop, the DHC/ART Education room will be transformed into a vast installation with a large tubular structure composed of various found and recycled materials. Lines of wires and thread will extend from its peak, connecting the structure to canvases that cover the walls of the room. These lines evoke branches, but also materialize the various networks and connections omnipresent in our everyday lives, and which are represented and critiqued in the exhibition IMAGINE BRAZIL.

During the workshop, participants are invited to cut fragments of the materials attached to the structure and to select various found objects suspended from the network of lines. They then create a collective landscape-collage using the 2D and 3D elements they have collected. Through this gesture, participants are symbolically confronted by the exploitation of human and natural resources, but are also given the opportunity to propose alternate gestures of reapproprating and recycling objects that would otherwise be disposed of. Inspired by participants’ experience of the exhibition IMAGINE BRAZIL, the landscape-collage allows us to collectively imagine the Brazilian territory from our own perspectives.
Since 2011, DHC/ART workshops have been designed with local artists. Red Roots / Green Lands is the result of a collaboration between DHC/ART — Education and artist Maria Ezcurra.  

SEE MORE Entretien avec Maria Ezcurra, Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain WATCH VIDEO