Urban agriculture - performance - debate
Aubervilliers 2019-2021

Jardin Nka was a project to activate an urban wasteland awaiting construction, through celebration of its agricultural past. It worked towards creating links with the future urban project and building an identity for the “new” neighbourhood.

Nka means create, make, invent or art in the Nigerian dialect Igbo. In Basaa (Cameroon), it indicates discourse, debate or exchange.

Jardin Nka was a two-year residency on a hectare of wasteland, planting vegetables and creating performances, agricultural rituals, wild-walks and wildflower observations. The space was open twice a week for neighbours, passersby and invited groups to garden, rehearse, or make totems, windmills, scarecrows or animal puppets. We pruned a winding path through the long grasses, gradually building ‘islands’ to visit: the vegetable patch, the orchard, our living space with tables, chairs, dry toilets and a shipping container/shed, and a wooden play-hut.

Immersive performances created: La Ferme d’Antan simulating a 19th century farm, with sheep, hand-tools and totems, and Place au Futur! experimenting with imagined and very real farming techniques of the future. Residents drew and constructed aquaponic and aeroponic growing systems, underground mushroom farms, a field of windmills and a wetland pond. Agricultural drones and remote-controlled tractors dotted the paths. Soundscapes diffused interviews collected on the varied agricultural heritage of the neighbours.


    Creative Team & Partners


    Artistic direction: Sarah Harper

    Construction and pedagogy: Pascal Laurent

    Landscaping: Antoine Hibou-Cwancig and Toumi Omrane

    Illustrations: Frede Dethier

    Costume designer/maker: Claudia Verdejo

    Sound creation: Erwan Quintin

    Production and administration: Pascal Laurent

    Costume assistant: Rita Raussou

    Sound technician: Pierre Allias

    Scenography construction assistant: Yan Ngo



    Plaine Commune: Culture la Ville

    SEM Plaine Commune

    Ville d'Aubervilliers

    Politique de la Ville