For Eco-Socialist Garden, NYU Shanghai (2019), as a new site-specific work for his exhibition at the ICA, ZHENG Bo invited a group of thinkers, gardeners, artists, and designers to come together to discuss, imagine, and build an experimental garden for the center of NYU Shanghai’s new campus. He asked: “Could this garden embody a different vision, as we find ourselves descending ever deeper into a climate and ecological emergency? Could this garden provide an experimental ground for us to imagine – and to practice – more-than-human sociality and eco-equality? Could this garden accommodate new modes of gardening in addition to new forms of design?” Their collectively created manifestos and garden maquettes, along with ephemera from the workshop, were presented in Goldenrod, an exhibition by Zheng Bo.
Goldenrod and its related events are presented as the first season of The (Invisible) Garden, a two-year artistic research program that inquires into the garden as a method that shapes our understanding of Nature and our relationships to other species. For four seasons, from Fall 2019 through Spring 2021, the ICA at NYU Shanghai will present artists, thinkers, and practitioners, through exhibitions, events, and a publication, to consider the garden and ask how might we denature Nature?