August 20th, 2019

A multi-scale map of the Mississippi watershed around St. Louis for the “river rats” of the Anthropocene.

“Territories—Watersheds—Infrastructures” is a multi-scalar field documentation and mapping project that positions the Mississippi watershed, its tributaries and St. Louis region within its broader watershed, particularly highlighting the complicated intersections of river management, industry, and recreation.

Multiple methods of field documentations will include photography and video shot from canoe trips with Big Muddy Adventures and aerial photography of various high- and low-water rivers stages shot via balloons and drones. The work not only will be used to represent ideas, but as objects of action for a set of dialogues about responsibility, agency, and possible futures for the Mississippi River Basin. To facilitate such, the field documentations, along with mappings of these complex watershed systems, will be exhibited at the Continental Cement Company on the riverfront, just north of downtown St. Louis. The fascinating industrial site straddles the intersections of the Mississippi River, barge industry, riverfront bike trail, floodwall, Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge/Interstate 70, multiple rail lines, and even the site of the erased Mississippian culture’s “Big Mound.” The exhibition will be scattered across the site in various platform zones for dialogues, one of which is a barge. These dialogues will include invited representatives from the US Army Corps of Engineers, Big Muddy Adventures, the public sector, industry and agriculture, ecologists and environmentalists, river rats and community members, among others.