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WAM (WORLD AGRICULTURAL MUSEUM)
Installation

WAM (World Agricultural Museum) is a site-specific work that uses the historical trope of the cabinet of curiosities to explore the introduction of biotechnology in farming.

This 200 square-meter art installation recreates the atmosphere and the colonial aesthetics of the old Agricultural Museum of Cairo, to present the contemporary discourses on genetically modified crops and their various derivatives, coupled with the implementation of intellectual property policies on seeds, international trade agreements and their connection with food insecurity.

The data used to build this narrative is antagonistic, and often contradicts each another. Some emanate from the official scientific discourse, some from peasant organizations; others are a blend of fantasy and propaganda, as well as information generated by supra-governmental institutions such as the FAO.

The material is presented in a way, in which is difficult to differentiate fact from fiction. The objects are presented in deliberate disorder, but they are following a very clear hierarchy: the mainstream propaganda pro-GMO backed by multinationals and governments occupy prime locations, while the data provided by independent researchers and farmers associations lays on the floor against the walls.

The museum displays hierarchy refers to the unscrupulous and disingenuous ways in which information is orchestrated to seduce the bulk of the citizens, prioritizing data but also concealing it.
 
On the walls we can see the contours of graphics that has been removed long ago, plenty of empty frames and closed doors bearing signs suggesting what lies behind and remain inaccessible.

WAM is a temporary space illusion, a sort of museum of the future, where the "truths" of our present reveal their potential obsolescence and the dogmas of our contemporary “agricultural progress”, covered in dust, seem less gullible.

The artist puts forward the museum as a theatre stage. In an attempt to bricolage the incomplete scenario that reveals the inconsistencies in the hegemonic narrative on food crisis today, the artist plays with the naïve and the absurd to stress the ambiguous status quo in the agricultural sector.

The project is conceived as a touring exhibition. It was first assembled in an old apartment located in Downtown Cairo and extended along five of its rooms, was hosted by the Townhouse Gallery and funded by the Spanish Embassy in Cairo and Beca de Movilidad Matadero-Madrid.

It has been shown at ARNOLFINI, Bristol as part of “The Museum Show”, occupying Bristol’s old police station.

It was part of Sharjah Biennial 12, occupying five rooms of a derelict warehouse on the Sharjah industrial dock Port Khalid.

It is part of the exhibition “Primary Sector” in the MUSAC museum of León, inhabiting the first floor of Fundación Sierra Pambley.

WAM (World Agriculture Museum) won Sharjah Biennial Prize in 2015.

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