Migrations

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The Multispecies Salon picked up new elements, like new infectious spores, as the exhibit moved around the United States.  Initially the show followed the routes of anthropologists as they traveled from San Francisco (2008) to New Orleans (2010) for a conference: the annual meetings of the American Anthropological Association.  In New York City the exhibit alighted in midtown Manhattan at the CUNY Graduate Center before migrating across the East River into Brooklyn.  There the Salon took up residence at Proteus Gowanus, an art gallery that was probing how “movements are affecting our future on the planet, bringing crisis and calamity aplenty.”  A piece illustrating one crisis, called “Multispecies Migrations,” involved living African Clawed Frogs in mason jars alongside pictures of microscopic spores from a pathogenic fungus.  African Clawed Frogs were first exported from South Africa in the 1930s for use in human pregnancy tests.  Unbeknownst to anyone at the time, this frog species can be an asymptomatic carrier of infectious spores from a deadly fungus that has begun to drive thousands of amphibian species extinct.

“Multispecies Migrations” (2012) by Eben Kirksey. (Photograph courtesy of Rashin Fahandej)
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a companion to the book