not illegal fishing competition @ Manifesta 15 Barcelona

Not Illegal Fishing Competition

El Llobregat, Barcelona Metropolitana

From 11 – 14 July 2024, the Embassy of the North Sea is organising the Not Illegal Fishing Competition in the river Llobregat, as part of Manifesta 15.

About half of the inhabitants of the metropolis of Barcelona have daily intimate contact with the Llobregat, as they drink its waters. Yet most of them do not know the river well. The city does not face the Llobregat. The river is virtually nowhere to be seen from the city, and is also difficult to access. To take care of a river, it has to start living in people’s imagination.

invasive species

One of the problems the Llobregat is facing is the excessive presence of invasive species. That is why Sheng-Wen Lo, Leon Lapa Pereira and Harpo ‘t Hart are organising the Not Illegal Fishing Competition on behalf of the Embassy of the North Sea. The inspiration for this comes from the popular fishing competitions in Taiwan aimed at eliminating invasive exotic species (read more here). Organising such a fishing competition in the Llobregat evokes understandable resistance, because, are we really encouraging people to kill animals? Provided you have a fishing licence, it is not illegal, but is it desirable? This question touches upon a common conflict between, roughly speaking, ecologists who think from a systems approach on one side, and animal rights activists with strong moral convictions on the other. What is in the best interest of the river and who are you to make choices for an ecosystem? And, what do you do with the invasive exotic species once you catch them?

The Not Illegal Fishing Competition invites you to get to know the Llobregat as a living ecosystem with its own beauty, problems and conflicts.

The Not Illegal Fishing Competition is open to everyone and to all ages, particularly those without a fishing licence or experience. On July 11 and 12 2024, the fishing competition will host two groups of children in summer camp. July 13 and 14 2024, the event is open to all.

The Not Illegal Fishing Competition will lead to an installation that will be on display at Casa Gomis during Manifesta 15.

About Manifesta 15

Spanning across over 3000 km2, the 15th edition of Manifesta (8.09.2024 – 24.11.2024) is set to bring fresh perspectives to Barcelona and the wider metropolitan region. Each of the 12 cities of the biennial will be grouped into one of three clusters, which will be linked to an overarching theme and geographical location. This will be the foundation of the biennial programme for Manifesta 15 Barcelona Metropolitana in 2024. Read more here..

Drawings: Wieger Windhorst