Mushroom Hunt

by Anchor Archive ()

Sunday, August 4th @ 2pm - Point Pleasant Park, Halifax


Join Roberts Street Social Centre resident Chris Kennedy for a mushroom hunting adventure like no other. Invoke the spirit of John Cage and help curate a score of moving bodies as we search for fungi, observe the landscape, and share our collective knowledge with each other. Meet at the Tower Road Parking lot at Point Pleasant Park at 2pm and then join us at Roberts Street Social Centre (2084 Creighton Street) at 6pm for a mushroom tasting celebration and a reading of poetry by John Cage and others. All are welcome; no expertise necessary; mycophobes need not apply.

Why Mushrooms?

Scientists have discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on earth, an individual mightier than the blue whale, the giant sequoia tree or such past pretenders to size supremacy as the dinosaur. The finding will force biologists to rethink their assumptions about what constitutes an individual, a fundamental problem in the study of the natural world and its ecosystems. Scientists normally view a single organism as something bound by a type of skin, whether of animal flesh or plant cellulose. But fungi grow as a network of cells and threadlike elements whose boundaries are not always clear. (The New York Times April 2, 1992)

When the largest and oldest living organism known surfaces, it manifests as a delicate mushroom no bigger than the palm of a hand. Fungi are the oldest and largest living organisms on the planet. Without fungi, there would be no terrestrial life on earth and have recently been discovered to have more in common with human DNA than any plant, insect or non-animal species on the planet. They can eat oil spills, cure cancer, remediate soils, help plants grow and are being used for insulation, architectures and as an affordable source of food around the world. They are also a metaphor for rhizomatic and latent potential, the possibility of unseen infrastructure just below our feet, weaving networks between things, between ideas and people. Mushrooms are the future.