Plantanimal, Three Thoughts on Alliance


Our union with plants began with an ancient alliance of foot and soil.

The sole of the foot gave the plant its name, planta:

‘to drive in with the sole of the foot’.

La planta del pie!

The word and the act of planting were born when vision entered the soil.

We don’t name the plant, but our relation to her.




Title image:

Cecilia Vicu.a
Poema Virgen del Cerro
Courtesy of the artist

Unknown artist
The Virgin of the Mountain
18th century
Courtesy of Museo
de la Casa de Moneda,
Potos., Bolivia

Artist-poet Cecilia Vicuña created the concept of Precarious Art in Chile in l966, an early response to the ecological crisis. Her improvisatory, participatory performances emphasise Indigenous cultural memory and the collective nature of action and creativity to bring forth justice, balance and transformation of the world. In 2017, Vicuña exhibited at documenta 14 in Athens and Kassel. Cecilia Vicuña: About to Happen was presented at five museums in the US from 2017 to 2020. Her retrospective Seehearing the Enlightened Failure opened at the Witte de With / Kunstinstituut Melly in Rotterdam in 2019 before travelling to MUAC in Mexico City in 2020. Vicuña is the author of 27 books.