The Garden of Virtual Kinship
A garden existing in both the physical and virtual worlds is situated on a walkable platform with a digital irrigation system underneath. The amount of water and light the plants receive is dependent on investment information received from popular microfinance websites such as Kiva.org. Successful entrepreneurial ventures trigger appropriate nourishment, while failed ventures may lead to dying plants, making visible the circulation of finance as it is exchanged from the developed to developing world. QR codes beside each plant allow visitors to access internet information feeding the irrigation system. Through the poetic gesture of a garden, the complex relationships between human life and economic growth within these new alternative economic models are brought to the forefront.
Stephanie Rothenberg is an interdisciplinary artist engaging participatory performance, installation and networked media. Through provocative interactions her work explores new models of outsourced labor and the power dynamics and structural relationships between contemporary visions of utopian urbanization and real world economic, political and environmental factors. Her work has been exhibited at venues including Whitney Museum Artport, Sundance Film Festival and Transmediale.