Ewiger Weizen. Brot Museum, Ulm
In a single century, wheat culture was reduced from over sixty thousand to a few dozen high-yield types. Remains of the disappeared native breeds of wheat are stored in seed banks, frozen and numbered, raw material for experiments. Beyond its concrete purpose, wheat has therefore achieved its highest abstraction as embodiment of wealth and sovereignty in the monetary symbol and in the computer number. The ears shown here are only a small fraction of the native breeds of wheat stored in the refrigerators of the gene banks. The photographs of Ursula Schulz-Dornburg make them accessible again to our senses. They are signs of recognition on the road to an entombed memory of the idea of variety and fertility existing before the victorious progress of the monoculture.