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Cuckoo Strategy

Silas Inoue

08.05.2015 - 29.05.2015

Silas Inoue: Cuckoo Strategy (installation view), formic, 2015. Courtesy: David Stjernholm.


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.

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