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Lament for NaturArchy catalogue

Still of Margherita Pevere on the floor of iMAL before the Lament performance started, she is holding red thread as her costume and tied to pieces of bark
Lament by Margherita Pevere; Photography by Romane Iskaria

Lament explores post-wildfire ecology in soil, offering a space where ecological and more-than-human death and grief are dignified and where fires are treated as a phenomenon that belongs to the co-evolution of ecosystems and humans. At the same time, the work engages with current ecological shifts and fractures, encompassing changing fire regimes, vulnerable ecosystems, and their less perceivable but highly relevant interplay with soil. 

Developed over eighteen months of research, the work combines ecological observation, bioart, sculpture, exchange with scientists and independent experts, musical composition, philosophical inquiry and encounters with communities who experienced devastating wildfires. The latter resulting in an emotional fire-scar map. 

Lament features a performance with sounds of cello and burned wood. Onstage are organic elements from a wildfire site and sculptural pieces: hanging glass sculptures containing soil, soil on the floor and a costume made of tree barks. After the performance, these remain as a more-than-human deathbed installation for the exhibition. The audience is invited to notice the tiny changes inside the glass sculptures, which evoke untold stories of soil ecology.

Performance: 40 mins performance for solo performer, cello and live electronics 

Installation: 4×7 m, glassware, rope, soil from burnt woods, paper Community engagement program based on sensory mapping

Margherita Pevere with Ivan Penov | Céline Charvériat, Lucía Iglesias Blanco & Diana Vieira Community engagement program in Santa Comba Dão (PT) with the support by ForestWISE and FIRE RES

Residency Project:  

Presentation of Residency @ JRC: 

Still of glass sculptures with soil inside them suspended over soil on a map at iMAL
Lament by Margherita Pevere; Photography by Romane Iskaria

Margherita Pevere

Margherita Pevere is an artist and researcher whose practice glides across biological arts and performance with a distinctive visceral signature. Her inquiry hybridizes bio-technology, ecology, environmental politics, gender and death studies to create arresting installations and performances that trail today’s ecological complexity. Her body of work is a blooming garden crawling with genetically edited bacteria, cells, sex hormones, microbial biofilm, bovine blood, slugs, growing plants and decomposing re- mains. She would not be the artist she is today without the many collaborations across art, science and humanities. Together with Marco Donnarumma and Andrea Familari she co-founded the artists’ group Fronte Vacuo. She is member of the Finnish Bioart Society, of The Queer Death Studies Network and of The Posthumanities Hub. She is completing a PhD at Aalto University on biological arts and queer studies.


Instagram: @margheritapvr

Céline Charvériat

Former IEEP Director (Institute for European Environmental Policy)

Céline Charveriat is a renowned research activist and experienced civil society leader. Céline started her career as a researcher at the Peterson Institute and the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington D.C., focusing on poverty, social protection, and natural disasters. Céline then worked for 10 years at Oxfam International, first as a researcher on poverty and international commodity markets, then as an advocate on trade and climate change issues. As campaigns director, she conducted Oxfam’s campaigns on inequality, climate change, gender and humanitarian crises and conflict. She was the Executive Director of the Institute of European Environmental Policy (IEEP) from 2016 to 2022, during which time she created the first pan European network of sustainability think tanks Think Sustainable Europe (TSE) and the multistakeholder platform Think2030. During that time, she also served as the Chair of the Board of the Climate Action Network Europe. Celine is currently one of the Vice Chairs of the European Commission’s high-level expert group ESIR (Economic and Social Impacts of Innovation and Research). She belongs to the council of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) and is on the board of Climate Catalyst. She also works as a coach and mentor for younger female civil society leaders and is one of the founding members of civil society collectives, such as End Ecocide Belgium and Mères au front Belgique.

IEEP Website

Lucía Iglesias Blanco

Lucía Iglesias, Forestry Engineer inspired and specialised in protected areas management by working in National Parks Network in Spain for 15 years, moved to Brussels in 2019, to work on the implementation of nature conservation policy (Habitats and Birds Directives). She is also involved in promoting the EU Natura 2000 network or protected areas and its achievements through the Natura 2000 Award scheme, or the use of the Natura 2000 logo in goods and services. However, the challenges related to the implementation of the nature conservation directives at national level are occupying most of the daily work. When she is not working, she likes illustration and photography, and she enjoys dancing, playing and listening to music.

Ivan Penov

Ivan Penov is a musician and sound artist whose artworks are inspired by natural and rural contexts and distinguish themselves for featuring unusual sounds of musical instruments and field recordings. His productions range from sound installations and acousmatic compositions to audiovisual works where images are treated as poetic and sensorial extensions of sound. Across the diverse media, the “gestures” of both sound and video are often inspired by material and ecological processes, be it the vibration of a bow or the fermentation of yeasts. His works were showcased at ICMC (Ljubljana), STEIM (Amsterdam), Sonorities (Belfast), Musiques et Recherches (Bruxelles), Estonian Music Days, VAEFF (New York) and, Membranes Out Of Order (Berlin) among others.

Diana Vieira

Diana Vieira is an Environmental Engineer with a special focus on soil erosion risk. She dedicated most of her time monitoring burned areas and understanding the underlying key-processes in fire-affected soils and landscapes to better adapt models to burned conditions. Over the past years she applied several hydrological models to recently burned areas and improved them in order to take into account post-fire mitigation and rehabilitation measures. She successfully included the effect of soil water repellency and post-fire forest management actions in her soil erosion predictions, and leaded the project that created a post-fire soil erosion risk map for Portugal. Diana is also dedicated to knowledge transference and strongly believes that art and technology should go hand in hand, and is a fervent advocate for equity and diversity. Her publication record includes several works at global scale, which aim to find land management solutions for post-fire on-site and off-site effects.