CUB - Center for Urban Biodiversity
Kunst in Het Witte de With Kwartier, Gallery Hommes, Rotterdam 2015.
Site-specific intervention. Variable dimensions.
Uncut grass of Westersingel Rotterdam, guided tours, dry plants, prints.
During the summer and until September 15th, the grass around the north Westersingel hasn’t been mowed. This non-action is part of an experiment to help the plants still inhabiting the grass field to develop and mature. In the nine weeks of free growth, 102 different species have been identified, harvested, dried and digitized to create a herbarium of the Westersingel, result and testimony of this process.
After years of mowing, most of the plants inhabiting the grass field have adapted to the conditions imposed by the city council and grew in a much smaller scale than if they would grow in their natural environment. This adaptation allowed some plants to develop fully and reproduce under the constant treat of the mower, while others have been facilitated by this action to spread and reproduce.
Only few areas of the Westersingel were inhabited by bigger plants; evidence of recent soil movement that has brought sleeping seeds from beneath to the topsoil. These areas are called ‘disturbance’ and are visible to the eye because they visually contrast the rest of the field.
This project was developed with the collaborations of city botanist Remko Andeweg from Bureau Stadsnatuur, Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam.