Kinnomic Botany

Freeing the Potato from its Scientific and Colonial ties, Film, 2020-22

Kinnomic Botany sets out a vision of a parallel botanical world through the ‘eyes’ of a potato. Entered through a clay pot, the landscape makes visual a system of mapping that encompasses what has long been lost from the potato’s history, while offering new pathways to connect with the plant world through personal and tacit experience.

As a species that crossed the Atlantic from Peru, the potato is subject to a typical hero story - the unexpected reward reaped by conquistadors on their exhibitions to Peru in search of gold. But in this journey, the significance of the potato plant as a whole was erased, as were the nuances of the knowledge systems surrounding it. The result, a spread of potatoes emerging from a narrow genetic bottleneck and a nomenclature to represent a new order over territories, borders, and non-human bodies.

Kinnomic Botany is a space for centering our different and authentic ways for knowing the vegetal world. This space is seeded with my embodied and evolving connections to the potato, but will grow through multiple-authorship and collaborations across dimensions, disciplines, and backgrounds.

But now
It is time to re(remember)
I am more than my tuber.
I am my seed,
my flower,
my fruits,
my roots.

© Iman Datoo