2019 - ongoing
Parallel botany is an ongoing project which explores the kingdom of artificial plants, using semi-fiction as a frame. Hypothesising the artificial plant as a characteristic plant of Anthropocene, it investigates what the culture of having fake nature means for mankind. As a first research outcome of this project, a publication titled 'Anthropophyta / 人工植物門' was published in November 2020. The details of the publication is as follows.
'Anthropophyta / 人工植物門'
Author: Sae Honda
Publisher: torch press (JP)
Graphic design: Akiko Wakabayashi
140 x 190mm／Soft cover／176P / 750 copies
ISBN: ISBN 978-4-907562-25-0
It is a semi-fictional encyclopedia of botany, in which the author has interwoven truth and fiction. It all starts from an untruth fabricated by her: that artificial plants have been accepted as real plants in the world of botany. Plants that linger quietly in the corner of a room or on the street, without seeking water nor light ー the so called ‘artificial plants’. They are never observed nor researched scientifically like natural plants, yet they keep spreading steadily and quietly in our everyday lives. She was interested in such a mysterious being, and made a study trip to some artificial plants factories in Guangzhou (China). The world of artificial plants is humorously delineated with her academic-like depictions of the travel report and the photographs of 70 leaves that she has collected.
ー This is, so to say, a semi-imaginary natural history book which aims to create a chance that the characteristic of each artificial plant (hereinafter this is called “Anthropophyta”) is observed and appreciated with a sense-of-wonder like natural plants.