As part of the fifth season of the Politics of Food programme, Delfina Foundation UK associate artist David Blandy explored his familial link to colonial food production and the legacy of agriculture as a tool to consolidate authority. David’s paternal grandfather was involved in the Swynnerton Plan, a British colonial scheme initiated in the 1950s with the aim of creating an African middle class in Kenya: a form of social engineering through agriculture.
Emerging out of his work in recent years around group world-building, at Delfina Foundation David has developed a tabletop game as a means to embark on a collaborative exploration of his research around the legacies of the Swynnerton Plan. During the season David tested early prototypes with his co-residents and with the public, which fed into the game’s development.
The game invites players will take it in turns to add elements to a map, imagining a post-colonial sci-fi world and then creating a set of characters to inhabit this space. They then respond to prompts, coming to terms with hidden histories and present injustices.
“Our planet was occupied by an alien force, who brought their customs, rules and an alien fruit. After years of resistance, the occupation has ended, but they’ve left behind this fruit, and everyone holds a secret from those difficult times.”
POLITICS OF FOOD
An outcome of Delfina Foundation’s fifth season of the Politics of Food, in partnership with Gaia Art Foundation and with additional support from a range of individuals and partners.