Rotor | 2015
WHAT'S EATING THE CHINESE MITTEN CRABWhat’s Eating the Chinese Mitten Crab orchestrates an encounter between visitors to two arts festivals taking place this summer: the Bruges Triennial and Beaufort in Zeebrugge. The starting point for Rotor’s project is the massive presence of a non-native species of crab in the Bruges canals and waterways: the Chinese mitten crab or Eriocheir sinensis. In China, this crab is considered a delicacy, but in Europe the creature is colonising the waterways and upsetting the local natural equilibrium. As a response to this disruption, scientists are looking for ways to destroy this crab population and researching forms of coexistence with native animal species. Rotor makes this fascinating topic a subject of discussion and experience in the Poortersloge: the artistic collective has installed a ‘natural history’ observatory there, with a wide range of photos, newspaper clippings, artefacts and an aquarium. In the URB SEA café, the pop-up version on the beach in Zeebrugge, a dining room has been set up where tasting sessions are regularly held with all sorts of invasive species of plants or animals on the menu, combined with roundtable discussions with researchers and experts.