Posts By: Burst

The Politics of the Graft

Posted on April 15, 2018 by - Politics of the Graft

Excerpt from Grafting the Sterile Tree
written by Margaretha Haughwout
Full essay published in lunch 13: Mischief

“… Grafting is a skilled performative and skilled sculptural gesture to cut branches in a way that make more branches, to attach branches that make fruit and viable pollen, to engage in relationships that fold economic divisions and redistribute abundance. What we wish to show is that scarcity is a condition of capitalism, and our performance/ sculpture point to a way out, a very tiny step among many, of this condition, a condition that fundamentally relies on binaries of nature and culture, public and private. Guerrilla Grafters encourage looking at neighborhoods of more-than-human life in ways that generate resources rather than deplete them, from sunlight falling on rooftops, to coppiced ash for buildings and pathways that make for healthier trees, to deadheading plants like Hypericum perfolatum, a practice which makes more blossoms, for medicine. Guerrilla Grafters think that all artists (everyone) should make this kind of labor the center of their practice so that our earth, and our cities especially, are laboratories for survival….”

Trees of Tomorrow

Posted on January 2, 2018 by - Projects and Events

Guerrilla Grafters are excited about a new partner project, Trees of Tomorrow, in collaboration with Margaretha Haughwout, Cody Herrmann, and Julian Phillips, Social Practice Queens, and the John Bowne Agricultural High School. Initiated with Gregory Sholette and Randall Szott. True to form, it is a sprawling collaboration.

Trees of Tomorrow is a guided, speculative tour of the trees of Flushing, Queens — exposing the ways trees shape, and are shaped by, neighborhoods, economies, and soils of Flushing; a complementary self-guided tour publication, echoing a futuristic theme, to be distributed with registration materials; and a speculative workstation where we collectively collapse the nature/society divide through specific cultural uses of a sampling of Flushing’s trees and tree grafting. Trees of Tomorrow asks how to empower new naturalcultural futures that enable local solidarity and survival across species.”


Re: In Colombia: Conflict Collapse and Care / Natural Resistance

Posted on August 15, 2017 by - Projects and Events

Guerrilla Grafters traveled to ISEA2017 in Manizales, Colombia this summer. Margaretha writes: “The Guerrilla Grafters have special resonance in cities where sterile trees line the streets, primarily sites of late capitalism, where historical natures are appropriated in such a way so as to constrain the co-production of viable resources both to humans and to plants and critters; where ornamentality is produced to support property. This kind of ornamentality supports the classist practice of looking, but not seeing, and certainly not engaging. It was unclear to me how much these practices resonated with my new Colombian friends, and what kinds of living, lived and yet-to-live alliances across difference must be made to support resistance to capitalism, or better yet, to co-produce multi-species alliances that topple it. It has always been Guerrilla Grafter’s aim to “undo capitalist civilization one branch at a time”; but of course these fertile branches loaded with viable pollen are meant to be one step in the introduction of new relationships and new life in the urban environment.” Read her whole post here.

Guerrilla Grafters with 100 Days Action

Posted on April 21, 2017 by - Projects and Events

100 Days Action “is a counter-narrative to the Trump administration’s one hundred day plan…. Whereas the President’s 100 Days will seek to dismantle restrictions that protect our environment, public education, health, and jeopardize unprotected minority groups, 100 Days Action is a forum for resistance, an artistic coming together, an exercise in endurance, a call to all bodies that stand against bigotry, xenophobia, racism, sexism, and the destruction of our environment to act together.”

The Guerrilla Grafters joined forces with 100 Days Action to conduct a Guerrilla Grafting teach in at the Southern Exposure Gallery this weekend. We let folks practice making grafts, discussed best practices on the street, offered scions and starter kits.

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Guerrilla Grafters at Open Street Dork

Posted on September 2, 2015 by - Projects and Events

Open Street Dork was on Sunday and the Guerrilla Grafters popped by to share our manual and talk about the problems and opportunities for cultivating an edible urban wilderness. Artist Kal Spelletich was there too with a remote controlled robot made of roses, Rick Abruzzo talked about Figment… There was amazing poetry, passionate rants and ideas for how to resist the clutches of property.

margaretha haughwout at dorkbot
Margaretha Haughwout with the Guerrilla Grafters. Photo by Karen Marcelo.


Posted on September 2, 2015 by - Projects and Events

The Guerrilla Grafters attended ISEA2015, the 21st International Symposium on Electronic Art in Vancouver, BC. We handed out guerrilla grafting kits, conducted grafting demos using fresh branches from ornamental street trees growing around Vancouver, and talked about ways we can share information about an accessible and edible urban wilderness without endangering it.





Photos by Adam Goodell