Zheng Bo

Artist in Residence 2020

Botanical Comrades 植物同志

As 2020 Artist in Residence at the Gropius Bau, artist and theorist Zheng Bo explores how plants practice politics. Past and future are the central parameters of his politically and scientifically informed artistic practice, in which he deals with socio-economic themes and the relationship between humans and nature.


At the Gropius Bau, Zheng Bo explores a variety of questions: How can plants, in particular in times of rapid climate change, become part of a political idea and help move away from anthropocentric notions of freedom? How can the equality of species on the planet be imagined and realised? During his residency at the Gropius Bau, Zheng Bo is in exchange with scientists to deepen his research into the politics of plants. On the Solar Terms of the East Asian lunisolar calendar he invites the public to join him for open studios that include talks, walks or workshops.

You can listen to Zheng Bo’s first conversations under the title of Politics of Plants. Preliminary Questions here:

ZhengBo & Natasha Myers
On plant-human solidarity in the “Planthroposcene”

ZhengBo & Roger T. Ames
On Daoist perspectives on interspecies thinking

ZhengBo & Takeshi Ise
On ways to imagine working with plants politically

ZhengBo & Elaine Gan
On the complex relationships between rice, humans, water, nitrogen, birds, insects and viruses

ZhengBo & Stephan Gale
On how the relations between orchids and fungus might be considered politically