Fallen Fruit - Huerto Sin Fin
FALLEN FRUIT (David Allen Burns and Austin Young)
Fallen Fruit’s first initiative was to map all the fruit trees growing within the public right of way land in a neighborhood of Los Angeles. Over the years, the collaboration has grown to include serialized public art projects, site-specific installations and public happenings in cities throughout the world. Working with photography, video, recontextualized objects, cartography, and wallpaper patterns, the artists use fruit and/or public spaces as a material or artistic means; their practice aspires to invoke new systems of understanding the ways we interact with public space and the natural world, especially in developed urban areas, such as how culture impacts a place and becomes “everyday life.” David and Austin’s projects invite people to experience their city as a fruitful, generous place, to collectively re-imagine the nuances of public participation and urban space, to ponder forms of located citizenship, and to explore the meaning of community and neighborhood through creating and sharing available resources.
For AKI AORA 2019, Fallen Fruit continued their exploration for the meaning of place and community with support from Azulik Uh May, Fallen Fruit extended their ‘Endless Orchard’ or ‘Huerto Sin Fin;’ fruit trees that are planted in the public right of way, to be shared by everyone and connecting neighborhoods across communities. The artists did their research focusing on and the area called Tulum town and the village of Francisco Uh May. They met with local residents, business owners, and community leaders to learn about local histories and cultural rituals. The artists went door to door inviting neighbors to participate in the project by adopting and caring for fruit trees to share with their community. Over thirty five fruit trees were planted in public spaces and adopted by local residents in a constellation linking Tulum town with Francisco Uh May. The Mayan language, which is under threat of extinction, was a vital component in the accessibility of the project, with a strong Mayan community still present in the region. A hand crafted wood sign placed at each fruit tree explains how to share the tree’s resources and care for it - both in Spanish and Mayan.
The artist’s created a hand drawn map of all existing fruit trees in the area including the newly planted fruit trees to activate this shared resource for the community. The artists appropriated a long standing strategy of local business in the area and hired a local work truck to drive around the area with a recorded message publicizing the project from a megaphone on top of the car. This driving procession as public intervention invited local community members and business owners of Tulum town and Francisco Uh May to share their fruits. The message was recorded in Spanish and Mayan. Everyone was encouraged to plant the trees and participants signed adoption forms agreeing to help care for the trees and share the fruit when ripe. The artists conducted a workshop with a local after school program called La Esquina Foundation. The youth created plastic spirit bug catchers from recycled plastic bottles to protect the trees and prevent potential diseases for the new fruit trees, teaching the children about recycling and safeguarding the fruitful trees.
As part of the fruit planting and research process, David and Austin with a support team from AKI AORA and IK LAB created a new film work, ‘HUERTO SIN FIN’ which tells the story of this collaboration and focuses on the alarmingly present advent of cultural tourism in the area threatening this natural paradise, the currency used to attract tourists in the first place.
Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration originally conceived in 2004 by David Burns, Matias Viegener and Austin Young. Since 2013, David Burns and Austin Young have continued the collaborative work.
Handmade signs written in Spanish and Maya are instructions for when to harvest and how to care for each tree:
The Endless Orchard
A public participatory project for everyone to share.
This fruit tree is a part of the Endless Orchard.
The fruit is for everyone, including you.
When ripe, please taste the fruit and share it with others.
Take only what you need.
Say “hi” to strangers.
Take a friend.
Go by foot.
This is a orange tree.
Oranges are ripe in May.
Created by the artists of Fallen Fruit
With AKI AORA and Azulik.
FRUTA PARA TODOS is a call to action and a poem. This message was recorded for the fruit truck recorded in both Mayan and Spanish.
FRUTA PARA TODOS!
Naranjas! Limones! Mandarinas! Papayas!
Guanabanas! MANGOS! Aguacates! SAPOTES
COMPARTA FRUTA CON SUS VECINOS.
CON SU COMUNIDAD
CON LOS SUYOS
CON LOS OTROS
CON LAS OTRAS
HAGAMOS UN HUERTO INFINITO!
FRUTA PARA TODOS!
FRUTA PARA LOS SUYOS
FRUTA PARA OTROS
FRUTA PARA OTRAS