Chris Reinders of Site_Specific interviewing Michelle Pieterson, a local resident who is part of the 'Rietondale open spaces and the proefplaas' organisation. Michelle and concerned residents are trying to protect and save inner city nature spaces by offering development proposals that add a cultural heritage and nature experience to the city.
One of their proposals includes establishing a traditional village complex within a bushveld camp setup with traditional indigenous farming practices as a place for inner city children to have access to an experience ordinarily not available to them.
If you wish to support them in their cause, or feel you could help facilitate development proposals that are non-destructive to the nature spaces and the small wildlife that survive in them in our inner city spaces.
Artists Izanne Wiid & Sybrand Wiechers activated an environmentally conscientious land art project that invited the Rietondale community and Pretoria residents to come and help clean up a site that is currently under threat of becoming a general dumping ground.
Members of the public are encouraged to take interest in the natural and indigenous heritage of the city, particularly in light of the looming environmental crises unfolding around us. Sites like these offer us a challenge - are we going to continue to do ‘business as usual’, or are we going to start paying careful attention to how we treat the place of humanity’s birth: nature.
Thanks to Riana Willemse for activating the community, and to Christo J Niemandt and Neil Human for documenting the event. Thanks to those community members who arrived and helped clean up parts of the site. All rubbish collected was dumped into a large waste basket, elevated off the ground to attract the attention of passers by, and place a spotlight on what is unfolding at this location.
This is your city, be part of protecting its natural heritage.
The land art work will remain in place for the duration of the Cool Capital biennale, and for as long as the large steel basket stays in place.
Members of the public are invited to visit the site, and find out more about what local residents are trying to do in attempt to save it. Watch this space for more details.