Bee Time April 2019

7/28 April 2019, Santa Lucía, Vejer de la Frontera, Spain


Swarming is the colony’s reproduction process in which the colony divides itself. Part of the colony, together with the queen, fly out of their hive – creating, what is often described by onlookers, a formidable black cloud, which eventually settles down as a humming cluster somewhere in the vicinity of the hive, temporarily poised whilst the scout bees fly out to seek a new suitable home. A new queen is left in the hive together with the rest of the bees to continue the legacy of the colony in a new cycle of life.

This swarming moment, a symbol of abundance and health of a colony, is of crucial importance for the colony. In commercial beekeeping swarming is not encouraged, and practices to inhibit the colony from swarming take place in order to keep the bees focused on honey production. The super-organism‘s natural process of reproduction is denied and repressed.

During the residency, we invite you to take an in depth look this explosion of life, collecting and relocating swarms in the La Janda region and holding conversations about the peculiarities of the swarming phenomena.

April is typically the time of year when this happens in our area, and participants in the residency will be invited to join Apijanda collection teams as they respond to swarm calls. We hope to provide participants with as much real time contact with swarms and their magic (swarm timing is weather dependent, so we cannot guarantee how many will be collected during the residency period).

Bee Time is an artist residency programme that works closely with a local learning community of natural beekeepers called Apijanda, and is strongly rooted in the local human ecology and culture in and around Santa Lucia, in Southern Andalucia.

Participants will work alongside the Bee Time team; artists and bee students, Jorge Gallardo, Pol Parrhesia and Karmit EvenZur, who dedicate their work to the investigation of the relationships between art, communities and their natural environments. During the residency, the Bee Time team assists and guides participants in the research that leads to the creation of individual projects maintaining, on some occasions, communication with the artists to further develop their work after they leave. As a way to give back to the local community what we have been investigating, we will hold open studio days on our last week together.

With the support and collaboration of:
Residency funded by ¡No hay un PLANeta B! Fondo Andaluz de Municipios para la Solidaridad internacional FAMSI. This project is co-financed by the European Union. With the collaboration of: AV Pedro Esquivel Santa Lucía and The learning community Apijanda.

Swarming Beettime Residency April 2019
Swarming Beettime Residency April 2019 / Drawing ‘32,202 abejeros 23.8.17 – 3.9.2017’ by Sophie Twiss