Maarten Vanden Eynde

Seeds of Memory is a group exhibition in which artists use traces of the past to tell stories. They depict memories and histories that may have taken place or have been invented, and arrange facts into a new story. The stories unfold in imaginative works in which landscapes, animals, materials and objects are the starting point: from the artificial division of the animal kingdom to an invented city, and from the long history of a noble Frisian estate to traces in the landscape.

Future Flora: Fungurume (2022) consists of topographic translation of the copper mine in Fungurume, DR Congo. The map was transferred onto a PCB (Printed Circuit Board) and decorated with a wide variety of seeds and grains collected in Fungurume, representing transistors and electrical components. Together they mimic a lukasa or ‘memory board’ like those used by members of the Mbudye association in the Kingdom of Luba (now part of the DR Congo) in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as archives for the topographical and chronological mapping of political histories and a means of remembering important people, places and mythical migration routes. The seeds are organised in relation to the graphic outlines of the mining concession and evoke the memory of seed collection, preservation, modification and militarisation. At the same time, they act as a back-up for rare plant species that sometimes grow only on one specific hill or in one particular valley as a result of the presence of certain minerals in the soil. They can be used to recreate the original fauna and flora when the mining activities have ended.