Listen with Mother? broadcasts situated voices from architecture, artistic and domestic practices that explore relationships between human and more-than-human kin through the expanded concept of the ‘mother’.

This evolving installation centres around a SCOBY* mother, brought from Newcastle University’s Hub for Biotechnology in the Built Environment, that will grow on a kitchen table situated in the gallery over the duration of the exhibition. Around this table, researchers from HBBE, artists, architects and other makers will be invited to share how they are working with non-human organisms, as a way to explore diverse perspectives on more-than-human care, kinship, control, nurture and culture from the lab, the gallery and the home.

*Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast

Find out more

Download Care Instructions for your 'mother'

The evolving microbial life in the gallery is mirrored by evolving stories, collected over the course of the exhibition and broadcast as audio directly beneath the ‘mother’, entangling cultures of bacteria, yeast and human in the situated context of the exhibition. These stories are part of ongoing research into our relationships between humans and across species boundaries.

By inviting gallery visitors to share their own stories, we wish to explore what happens when we think of bio-materials as living organisms which require care and controlled conditions in order to survive (and thrive), rather than simply as ‘resources’ to be extracted from our environments? How might this allow us to reflect upon our responsibility towards planetary resources?

‘Listen with Mother?’ is a collaboration between Dr. Louise Mackenzie and Kaajal Modi, researchers within the Responsible Interactions research group at the HBBE. It is a part of the BioDwelling project, which explores our relationships with living materials in the context of the home.
Back to Top