The Exchange

As landscapes throughout the Mississippi River Delta change rapidly, due to unprecedented land loss and restoration efforts, the memory of place(s), the native ecosystem(s) and the traditions of unique culture(s) face an uncertain future, with few opportunities for effective public discourse or explanatory exhibition.

The Land Memory Bank and Seed Exchange will travel to climate challenged communities in the Greater New Orleans area to be activated as a multipurpose base camp and transitory-gallery, a shelter, a studio, a resource center, an idea depot, a seed bank and a civic dialogue space. A key part of the Exchange programming will include the offering of photographic portrait services free of charge to communities. Additionally, the Exchange will offer restoration and digitization of photographs documenting land, plants and/or people. When appropriate, audio and video documentation will be captured. Collected images and stories will be exhibited and featured as part of the roaming Exchange and will be filed in a publicly accessible Land Memory Bank digital archive.

Exchanges will also act as a depot for native Delta seeds and plants to be collected, documented, propagated, planted and shared across southeast Louisiana. Visual surveys of the land will be recorded, using open source technology and conventional documentary tools, site-specific maps will be created and when possible, native seeds and/or plants will be harvested. By collecting, educating and dispensing of native species, biodiversity and medicinal plant knowledge will be preserved, food sovereignty strengthened and the natural system will have a chance to be protected, restored and remembered. A catalog will be constructed, as an online reference, out of the visual land and seed data.