Cuckoo Strategy • Formic


Cuckoo Strategy, installation view, Formic, 2014 (photo David Stjernholm)



Cuckoo Strategy, detail, Formic, 2014 (photo David Stjernholm)



Cuckoo Strategy, installation view, Formic, 2014 (photo David Stjernholm)


Cuckoo strategy
The ants are most likely completely unaware of the likeliness between the two objects inhabiting Formic* and the wings of the butterfly Alcon Blue (Phengaris Alcon). The Alcon Blue is the secret enemy of the ant species inhabiting Formic (Myrmica Rubra). In nature the larvae of Alcon Blue tricks the ants to believe they are larvae of their own colony, and are thus adopted and fed for a whole year, till they finally unfold their wings and escape the colony – a method known as the “Cuckoo strategy”. This parasitic relationship has severe consequences for the ant colony, as their own larvae is underfed in favour of the much bigger butterfly larvae. In Formic however, the threat of wasted labour, and extinction of the colony have been reduced to mere representation of the Alcon Blue – a static set of wings, with their “eyes” poked out.

*Formic is a new project space, aiming to show artworks addressed for both ants and humans. The space is a glass cube measuring 25 x 15 x 15 cm located between the colony and a feeding area. It can be visited by the ants 24/7. The project space is created and run by visual artist David Stjernholm.

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