Fiona MacDonald : Feral Practice
Fiona MacDonald is an artist, researcher and curator who lives and works in Kent, England. She works with human and nonhuman beings as Fiona MacDonald : Feral Practice to create art projects across species boundaries, and interdisciplinary events that develop ethical and imaginative relations across species boundaries. Her current research focuses on scientific, artistic and more esoteric methods of interspecies communication.
Recent projects include: ‘Plant Hunting, 2018’: exhibition and events responding to the botanical achievements of Cook’s Endeavour voyage, commissioned by Invisible Dust for Whitby. Ask the Wild 2017-18: events exploring knowledge beyond the human, developed with Marcus Coates: Whitechapel Gallery, Tate St Ives, Turner Contemporary, Whitstable Biennale and The Ash Project, South London Botanical Institute. Mycorrhizal Meditation, 2017: public sound work for Finsbury Park, commissioned by Furtherfield Gallery. Foxing, 2017: exhibition and public commission, PEER London. Wood to World, 2015-16: exhibition and events, London and Kent.
Feral practice pursues an exploratory, ludic and intimate connectivity with nonhuman life, which does not set species boundaries or nature/culture divides too firmly. The focus of her work and research is to develop strategies for, and reflect on, interspecies co-productions within a visual art practice.
The term feral is used in contrast to notions of wildness/wilderness that conceive the wild in opposition to the human. Feral Practice keeps the body and imagination of the human artist clearly in the frame – the aim is not so much to become animal/plant/place but to meet with animal/plant/place through the processes and reflexivity of art.
‘Plant Hunting, 2018’ was part of the ‘Encounters’ exhibition which is part of worldwide events that mark the 250th anniversary of James Cook’s first voyage to the Pacific in 1768. On display at Whitby Library until 24th August 2018, ‘Encounters’ explores the scientific and artistic impacts of Cook’s voyage, and the shared histories of encounter between Cook and the Peoples of the Pacific.
Image: Fiona MacDonald: Feral Practice. Photo credit Invisible Dust.