Amy Franceschini & Michael Taussig: This is Not a Trojan Horse
Summary NoteThis is Not a Trojan Horse was a project created by Futurefarmers: Amy Franceschini, Stijn Schiffeleers + Lode Vranken and in collaboration and with Pollinaria, an organic farm and artist residence operating in the rural context of Abruzzo, Italy, during the summer of 2010. Materials in this archive include digital images, video, copies of and original concept sketches, a cardboard model, and correspondence.
Amy Franceschini is a San Francisco artist and educator who uses various media to encourage formats of exchange and production, many times in collaboration with other practitioners. An over-arching theme in her work is a perceived conflict between humans and nature. She founded the artists collective Futurefarmers in 1995, and co-founded Free Soil in 2004. Her solo and collaborative work have been included in exhibitions internationally including ZKM, Whitney Museum, the New York Museum of Modern Art and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco. She received her BFA from San Francisco State University and her MFA from Stanford University. She is currently a visiting artist at California College of the Arts and Stanford University. She is the recipient of the 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship, Artadia, Cultural Innovation, Eureka Fellowship, Creative Capital and SFMOMA SECA Awards. Biographical Note: Future Farmers
Futurefarmers is a group of artists, designers and architects who use various media to create work that responds to the time and place around them. A constant throughout their work is a concern and critique of systems of capital and their effects on the material and social environment. They deconstruct food policies, public transportation, rural farming networks to visualize and understand their intrinsic logics. Often through this disassembly they find new narratives and potential reconfigurations that might propose alternatives to the principles that once dominated these systems. The group was founded in 1995 as a design studio that serves as a platform to support art projects, an artist in residence program and research interests. Collectively, they teach in the graduate program at California College of the Arts in San Francisco and the joint masters program of art and engineering at Stanford University.
Biographical Note: Pollinaria
Pollinaria is an organic farm and artist residence operating in the rural context of Abruzzo, Italy. Pollinaria offers its spaces and support to projects proposed by creative thinkers in the arts and sciences, fostering cultural progress and innovation in their region and beyond.
Scope and Content
This is Not a Trojan Horse was a project created by Futurefarmers: Amy Franceschini, Stijn Schiffeleers + Lode Vranken and in collaboration and with Pollinaria, an organic farm and artist residence operating in the rural context of Abruzzo, Italy, during the summer of 2010. Michael Taussig was attached as a writer, but no materials from his part of the project were donated.
“I farm because…” This and other questions were posed by This is Not a Trojan Horse, a large, human-powered, wooden horse designed by Futurefarmers with architect Lode Vranken. Built at Pollinaria in Abruzzo, Italy, the project emerged as a vehicle for social and material exchange at a pivotal moment in the region. A few decades ago wild horses roamed free in Abruzzo and agriculture was a thriving and predominant occupation. Now big box stores, parking lots and gas stations are quickly taking place of pastures and cultivated land, while modern-day agricultural standards threaten the nuances of traditional production. Nearby cities lure the young, leaving the aging farming population without a generational change of guard. The region gained a momentary spotlight on the world stage during the earthquake of L’Aquila in 2009 and shortly thereafter the G8 summit, undergoing important changes within a very short time.
Abruzzo becomes the pasture where This is Not a Trojan Horse wanders freely on a 10-day tour collecting traces of rural practices; seeds, tools and products to enliven the imaginations of farmers through discourse, artistic production and to parade their truths to power. The idea of the Trojan Horse becomes a significant modus operandi for contemporary society, beyond the symbol embedded in the historical-mythical event. Upon return to Pollinaria collected seeds were planted to symbolize the collective memory of the tour and to celebrate local biodiversity.
Materials in this archive include digital images, video, copies of and original concept sketches, a cardboard model, and correspondence.
Quantity / Extent
Related Archive Collections
- CAE1119: Artists | Writers | Environments (A|W|E) Grant Program
Franceschini, Amy, and Daniel Tucker. Farm Together Now: A Portrait of People, Places, and Ideas for the New Food Movement. San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books LLC, 2010.
Franceschini, Amy. Victory Gardens 2007+. San Francisco, CA: Gallery 16 Editions, 2008.
Helmy, Malak, Franceschini, Amy, ... et al. I'm a park and you're a deer. San Francisco, CA : Practice and Practice. 2009.
Natural World Museum, Art in Action: Nature, Creativity, and our Collective Future. San Rafael, CA: Natural World Museum, 2007.
CAE Box 95
- Folder 1 Project Proposal and Description, 2010-2011
- Folder 2 Pollinaria Residency, 2008 - 2011
- Folder 3 Project Sketches, Models, Photographs, and Video, 2010 - 2011
- Folder 4 Website and Press, 2011 - 2014
- Folder 5 Exhibition Correspondence and Information, 2011
- 3#1 Preliminary Drawing on Paper Bag
- 3#2 Concept Sketch #2, 2010
- 3#3 Drawing No. 1, 2010
- 3#4 Thinking is for Horses, They have a Big Head, Concept Drawing, 2010
- 3#5 Horse Head as Periscope, Concept Drawing, 2010