💕 Interspecies Speed Datingis an experimental gathering hosted by artist Alice Yuan Zhang during her 2021-21 residency at CultureHub. Participants were asked to fill out this 'dating profile' prior to the event.
What's your species?
All non-humans are welcome.
Where are you from? 🌍
What's your natural habitat? Are you a long-time native, recent migrant, or frequent traveler?
What do you do for a living?
Do you spend your time pollinating, collecting, hunting, fruiting, photosynthesizing, flying, repurposing, cleaning, or simply resting?
Who are the most important allies in your life?
Tell us about your friends, collaborators, co-conspirators, and relatives. You may discover mutual kin with others!
How do you feel about humans right now?
We understand this can be a weighty question for you. Please answer honestly and come with an open mind.
And lastly, what are your hopes for the future? ✨
LemurI am from Madagascar. I've lived there for thousands of years.I spend my time jumping from tree to tree, eating various fruits, and picking the bugs out of my family members' fur.The birds in the upper canopy always let me know when a predator is coming through my neighborhood. I also really like animals that poop around the plants that bear fruit that I eat because their shit acts like a fertilizer for the plants.I don't really like them. Also I am definitely superior to them. I am way more resourceful. I can jump further/higher. I am more nimble. They keep taking away the trees that I live in.I just want to be in a lush forest w/ all the fruits and bugs I can eat and fresh water I can drink. It would also be nice to mate this spring.
chrysanthemumlong-time native of hawaiii spend my time thinking about the universewhile humans are killing our natural habitat, they also import us across the world using their technologyonce humans realize they don’t control the planet, they will become a more mature species. right now, the entire species is stuck in a juvenile adolescenceThe future is controlled by spores and bacteria. It always has been, and it always will be
Outcast HumanAlthough my natural habitat is the Black Sea (the real one, not a hypothetical Black Sea), what was supposed to be a brief vacation on land extended indefinitely when I got caught up in non-outcast Humans'pandemic frenzy.I collect drift wood, seaglass, plastic waste. I dive, I float, I hardly ever swim. I do levitate over the surface every now and then. I climb crags by the shore. I eat kelp and fish. I drink Islay malts. I sing. I jump off crags by the shore (into the sea), I stalk boats, I sleep. I write notes (such as this one) and cast them off in Russian vodka bottles sailors throw away at night.None. I said Outcast, right? But I'm looking.I have faith in a handful of real humans and one or two imaginary ones. The rest can go take a hike in Mars.Truth, a planetary reckoning, love, companionship, pleasurable adventures.
SnakeSwampHuntingSalamanders, lizards, and spidersUnintelligent, dangerous, grossAnarchy
ashfrequent travelercreatinglove! gratitude! abundance!supporting, nurturing, empathy, kindnesspeace!!!
EarthseedFrequent travelerGathering, connecting, seedingAn interconnected web of femme love and supportThey are on the way out, and it’s time they leaveCare and connectedness with the air we breathe, the water and sustenance that gives us life, and the universal energies that surround us
otterOceanSwimKelpThey are hurting my seaweed forests :(Healthy oceans 4 ppl plants and animals :)
SalamanderAnericas, Europe, asia--anywjeee that isnt too hot or cold! I like hanging out where there are swimming optionsAs an "opportunistic predator," I take life as it comes and try not to plan ahead too much but always ready for a short adventure.I'm always down to meet other salamanders and co exist with other amphibians but kind of a loner :(Not great tbh. Like pretty much every nonhuman organism salamanders, especially large ones, are in a precarious state. I don't really understand what humans deal and but try to avoid them if I canMore aquatic environments
bb belugaThe great open oceans aka the yay area. 🌊
I am long-time native that loves to travel! 💖🧳✨
I like naps. 😴My chosen family. People i care about. We work together. Play together. Create together. And cry together. We cute. Also we like snacks.Humans a cute! They are under a ruling class system that cause them to hurt each other and the world, but they are mostly nice. I have faith that they will figure it out — eventually.I hope humans realize, in order for the survival of all living things on the planet, they need to collapse their current system. It doesn’t work and it bring out the worst! 😭😭😭
FungiLong time nativerecycling and repurposingI collaborate with and co-founded a creative studio called MACRO WAVES. I was born, raised, and currently live in the Bay Area, Oakland. I often collaborate with Oakland based artist and creatives. I am also Filipinx and learned about social justice movements as a youth through Filipinx grassroots organizations like Bindlestiff and ALAY in SF. I am currently in a Asian American x Afro Sci-fi book club.I believe everyone deserves basic human rights and that capitalism does not prioritize human rights, but rather profit. I also believe in open dialog and taking the time to learn and unlearn about this topic, rather than canceling those who may not understand.I hope our future ancestors can live life prioritizing their physical, mental, creative, and spiritual wellbeing, over profit, money, and status. I envision a future where we can work together rather than in competition with one another.
interstellar quokkarecent migrant to planet earth, originally hailing from a foresty planet far far awaysearching for fruits & nuts (mmm papayas!), dancing, cuddles, building nestsother warm & fuzzy beings that like to bask in sunshine, roll around in glitter, find poetry in minutia, and are fiercely protective of their chosen kinstudied them from afar, am confused & concernedabundance of sweet fruits and kindness, no need to bare teeth, big fields and fresh air to frolic in
bumble beefrequent travelerpollinatingmonarchstheyre too bigAnd there's too many of themMy hope is that bumblebees will flourish and live for a long time
stinging nettle, mugwortnatural habitat = western europe (rainy, cloudy, temperate) but i have been living in Tiohtiá:ke/Montreal for five years now (cold and snowy winters, hot and humid summers)resting, healing, sharing / working and learning when not burnt outFRIENDS PLANTS GROWING THROUGH CONCRETE TREES GRAVITY CELESTIAL BODIES REVOLUTIONARY SOULSMost humans are trying their best to survive and transform the systems we live under.I want a future in which people can rest and have access to safety, pleasure and awe. I want a future free of racism, ableism and transphobia. I want a future free of bosses and landlords.
mushroomsIntergalactic travelerTransforming, composting, growingFAIRIESI'm their partner, we are co-creating. They are violent but i still collaborate with themSomething completely different
mermaida cavern dweller – frequently swim between land & seacombing my hair, flossing with seaweed, casting & breaking spells, erasing memories, channeling pure love & spiritspace! fish friends & other water inhabitantsafraid, curious, (in) love,a peeled world
MolluscaLong-time native of Earth’s oceansHunting, exploring, playing with my friendsI spend a lot of time aloneUnsure, i’ve met both good and badHarmony and love
Asian Small-Clawed OtterA recent migrant from underwater sonorous landscapes.I spend most of my time collecting and tasting things. Resting the other majority of my time with the occasional symbiosynthesizing of things.Mostly friends with migrating birds of all feathers. Related to some deep sea jellyfish, ground squirrels, and parrots. Co-conspirators have lately been whales.Humans make me sigh and take a deep breath. I have been learning new ways to communicate & connect with them while taking some distance.I hope for a future that isn’t based on reality tv and is based in a collective understanding of the inherent symbiotic nature of human and non humans.
jellyfishUnder the sea!Swimming around, buzzing at SquidwardThe shark next door, his name is HankI'm a Jellyfish, I don't have a brain!There is a beautiful plastic crinkly bag with yellow and blue colours floating over the bank, I haven't dared to talk to her yet, I hope she will notice me some day
Hank the sharkUnder the seaI have to keep swimming, otherwise I will die!The jellyfish next doorI don't like that they pollute my neighborhood. The jellyfish next door is a little confused and thinks that one of the plastic bags floating around here is his true loveThat the world will get better and that the humans will stop polluting my neighborhood, of all places!
OtterNative to Elkhorn sloughI hunt and eatOther otters mostly but we share a habitat with seals and fish so we try to be homies with them as wellThey are highkey ruining the ocean but we just try to make the best of it day to day. Surfers and kayakers are cool humans.I just want to live in clean healthy water and a diverse ecosystem so my friends and fam live full & happy lives
Red PandaLos Angeles born & raisedhunting & gatheringmyself>:(:')
PolysyntheticsThe application of the Schrodinger equation on a Tuesday afternoon at the crossing of a bridge.In between states of resistance, I like spending my time in circular motions. My home, a resting place for intersecting axis. I mostly observe and narrate my breath.Some allies I keep far, far enough to indulge in knowing without knowing. The relationship is then always potential. Like a swarm of blues birds, I add my note in silence but welcome their melody to my syntax.

Others, defined by proximity and a more palpable exchange, remind me we share a present. My favorite moment is the passing of objects: a chair, a plate, a letter, a kiss; for a brief time we are just one.
When I wake up to find my body attached to my thoughts, I close my eyes for a brief second and imagine another body, in another room, often deciphering if the wave sounds in the distance are of mid-day or later afternoon.

With one eye closed the other one here, I am one of an other. How many bodies can join my syntax? I am never bored, often saddened by the limiting beliefs resting on my pillow. What patterns of thinking will hatch from our melting cocoon? Let's have 24h together.
Intertwined I hope our bodies temperature will come to a halt. No energy exchange to distract our thoughts from free falling in to the beauty of uncertainty.
HumanRecent migrantResearchingTheatre makers internationallyIn awe yet still distrustfulTo have a family
Greenland sharkI’m from the deep cold waters off the coast of Norway, but I recently moved to the ocean of the mid-Atlantic regionI spend most of my time looking for rotting meat in the water and following fishing boats aroundMy best friend is a clam named Roxanne.She doesn’t talk much, but she’s a great listener. Most people avoid me because I smell like pee and rotting flesh, but Roxanne doesn’t have a nose.Humans are okay, especially when they drop food into the water off boats. Back in Norway I would get hunted sometimes which wasn’t fun, so generally I’m pretty scared of them.I hope to see my 500th birthday and one day find a mate, which is hard to do so far from home, and have about 200 babies.
Adventurous felineI travel between New York and californiaMaking lovefriendsI am becoming more of a misanthropeWe can cuddle together like cats
WhaleThe OceanWater filteringSeaweed, Fish, Salt, Seaslugs, Sea creaturesTime now to Re-member us All💚💙Take time to hear & act well each day, clean our Water, keep clean in all your devious moment to moment, water is beautifulAll my relatives will reproduce and fill the seas all over 🐋
RaccoonYou can find me in any part of North America really, in urban or suburban landscapes. I'm smart enough to figure out even the most complex garbage storage devices, and nimble enough to climb up trees or in and out of tight places. I have some cousins that were sent over to be part of a sanctuary in Germany in the late 30s, and they were set free after the human war was over. I hear that, abroad, my cousins are still referred to as, "Nazi Bears!" Me, though, I'm born and bred on the mean streets of the city, and also the mean subway tracks of the city, and also sometimes the basements and dumpsters humans keep loading up with delicious, comforting, like-a-hug-for-my-guts, trash.I am so could at stealing things! If you have something you don't want me to steal you should DEFINITELY get some kind of ornate human safety device, probably one that uses technology in some capacity, and you should also DEFINITELY not surround it with food, refuse, or human garbage in any way. If i figure out how to open something once, I can not only remember it forever, I can teach it to all of my friends. Also I have incredibly dexterity - you would think in my free time I'm an artist. My mom always said I had potential. Well, she said that to me and my 18 siblings vying for her attention. But at the end of the day, there is no greater art than that of survival, which means I'm a regular rembrandt over here.You know squirrel? They're cool. Sometimes a little to particular if you ask me, but also pretty ingenius in terms of "leaving something somewhere and coming back for it later." Who knew hiding nuts around town would mean you have endless snacks during/after winter? I'm familiar with Mice and Rats, but they run with their own crew, you know? They look at me like I'm some fluffy ogress coming in to steal their pizza remnants, and sometimes that's because I am. I tried to date this Cat once, she was real nice, clean looking, had no opposable thumb like me and I have to say I really liked that about her. She would sometimes see me and sing see whisper-hiss songs I think. We didn't speak the same language, and she always had a full bowl of snacks, so sometimes I would stop by and try to show up by grabbing some and running away on only two legs. She knows how to play coy - in all this time we never even kissed! So when I'm feeling like I need to procreate I sometimes hang out at the Possum Brothel - it's cheap enough and they wear masks during covid, and I'm thankful not to see all those teeth when I'm at my most vulnerable if you know what I mean. I always prefer a bushy tail to a Possum tail, but as you get older, you get less picky about that sort of stuff, if you know what I mean.Without humans, I mean, I wouldn't be as comfortable as I am. I wouldn't be everywhere. Sure, they're annoying. They film me a lot, but I'm an entertainer. I'm a little bit of a scoundrel I can own that, sure. Do I always love humans? No. Do they always love me? No. But I think we have a mutual understanding that allows us to coexist. They waste a lot of food and throw it away, and I'm there to consume some of it and teach my buddies about it back at the nest. Living in NYC definitely beats going into those chicken coops my cousins deal with in the country. Too much noise, too much mess, too many feathers, and everyone is ready with a shotgun at the drop of a hat. I'll take my chances on the elevated rails of the J,M,Z thank you very much.Babies. I gotta show my ma I can make babies too. "Hands of an Artist" she used to say. Maybe I'll say that to my own kids, presuming, of course, they are successfully dextrous like myself.

I also think it would be pretty interesting to fuck a wolf if you know what I mean. Fox, sure, closer in size. But a fuckin' wolf? I feel like I'd make raccoon history with that.
half human, half cloudancient native of earthpollinating, migrating, bloominga melange of flowers, fish, and seedsi feel that we can work together, as collaboratorsharmonized interaction
Herd of CaribouFrequent travelerCollectingI share my habitat at times with black bears, fox, moose, and lemmings. We have a good thing going- keep the contact short and sweet.Wow. It is a weighty one. Humans are an existential threat to my species. Already my relatives have gone extinct forever.Good grass.
SquidI'm from the deep sea at the port of LA, near -800m. I recently migrated here and am still figuring out my position in this dark space!I hunt for small fish, crabs, etc. but I mainly make a living by collecting other cephalopods' spermatophores and offer spermatophore jungle juice.Octopuses, of course, when they feel like hanging out (which is rare). I also really like morphing my body to resemble corals and going near them, which gives me a sense of belonging.Welp because of sea pollution our population is increasing as biodiversity lowers. In general I think their skin is wrinkled and gross, and their bodies are so rigid, just like how they think.LET'S MAKE MORE SQUID BABIES.
dwarf hamsterBeipu, Hsinchu Countyi make kites out of leaves and sell them in townother rodents, sometimes non-white humans, but mostly non-human animals show more kindnessthey are disrespectful, entitled and destroy and will destroy all that is beautiful...all of my non-human animal friends think the samea world with less humans, way, way, way less and i want all my non-human friends to be released from cages and human homes
yellow woodsorreli'm native to north america + i love a good meadow, forest, field, front yard, back yard, sidewalk crack, pretty easy to please as long as there's some sun!photosynthesize during the day, sleep at night. i open up with these pretty yellow flowers. mate with myself when the time is right. love my pollinators + when i'm harvested thoughtfully..i loooooove the pollinators. so happy to meet and greet them. love my herbivores too. the sun and the rain and i love people who harvest me with care, it can be so cuteit depends on who. i dont think its really my business to judge whether someone is a good human or not, but some of them definitely dont treat me well. pouring pesticides, chemicals on literally what do they think i'm up to? i dont take it personally because i know the ways they abuse me reflect their own dissociation from themselves...but still sometimes i'm just like DAMN can they please chill tf out. some humans tho are great, they visit me for a snack or use me to dye, both i loveeeee giving!my big hope is for humans who are indigenous to come back into stewardship of the land that settlers stole from them. so much will come from that. and i hope the settler humans will heal themselves so they will stop bringing so much poison to our relationship. literal poison!!!!! also i hope that its sunny tomorrow!
CapybaraMy natural habitat is on the muddy banks of winding river in the foothills of magnificent mountain ranges. I travel only as far and at the speed my short legs can walk or swim. I like to travel with my pack, but I am happy discovering new delights on my little muddy bank.I am an herbivore and spend most my time wandering around and grazing for grass on land as well as little water plants. I especially like to eat and graze with my herd - sometimes we find fruit and bark! Community is important to me and I like to let other animals - especially birds - sit on my head. When I'm not eating grass I like to roll in the mud and relax and snuggle in the sun.I am the largest of the rodent family. Birds are my favorite collaborators to have sit on my head. I like to watch the river dolphins swim by too but we don't really talk. I have also never talked to a fish but am curious about them. I have heard that captive capybaras are best friends with other animals like dogs but I have never met one!Many humans are cutting down my habitat and polluting it which makes me sad. I have noticed others being very kind to me though. Some say I am cute :)I hope for my grasses and river to be green and flowing, to find lots of fruit, to meet and swim with a dolphin and maybe a fish too, for more animals to sit on my head! And to one day meet a dog and become best friends!
Soft shell crabFrequent traveler in my mind, long-time native in my bodycollecting, moving, hidingwhere the land meets the seaentitled, hopeful, sympatheticcollective wealth, healing, and understanding
DodoExtinct birdI don't live nor do any more.All the creatures that won't kill all my siblings.I am going to haunt them with guilt until I live again.To return to the past.
Tree FrogNew ZealandRebittingTreesHumans are horrible creaturesRain rain rain all the time
yellow boaI live only in Jamaica in undisturbed woodland and limestone karst forests.I'm up all night! I hang from trees and outside of caves to catch bats and I slither on the ground sometimes to catch rats. I like to coil in tree tops to digest and rest during the day.I'm really a loner.I'm still holding some resentment towards humans for when they introduced the Mongoose to Jamaica, which is not a native species and is now my main predator. Also, finding real estate is really challenging now that they are gentrifying. I can hardly find a wild patch of grass anymore! And don't get me started on the topic of slaughter. Ever since they started reading the Bible they kill me whenever they see me thinking that I'm evil, when we've never even met before! They don't seem to respect the government ban on killing me! My cousin got scooped up and I heard he lives in a cage now. Not a fan of humans!Well... I hope more humans will become educated about me so that they know I don't want to cause them any harm. And maybe I should try to make more of an effort to relate to some other species instead of being such an introvert.
beebeehive/flowerspollinating & vomiting color in the form of flower paintingscurrently my parents & certain friends who happen not to be narcissisticdissappointed & concerned about their futurefun activities during free time, more ambitious art projects, better admin systems & money management
Cannabis SativaThe family Cannabaceae now includes Cannabis, Humulus, and eight genera formerly in the Celtidaceae. Grouping Cannabis, Humulus, and Celtis actually goes back 250 years. Print fossil of the extinct genus Dorofeevia (=Humularia) reveals that Cannabis lost a sibling perhaps 20 million years ago (mya). Cannabis print fossils are rare (n=3 worldwide), making it difficult to determine when and where she evolved. A molecular clock analysis with chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) suggests Cannabis and Humulus diverged 27.8 mya. Microfossil (fossil pollen) data point to a center of origin in the northeastern Tibetan Plateau. Fossil pollen indicates that Cannabis dispersed to Europe by 1.8–1.2 mya. Mapping pollen distribution over time suggests that European Cannabis went through repeated genetic bottlenecks, when the population shrank during range contractions. Genetic drift in this population likely initiated allopatric differences between European Cannabis sativa (cannabidiol [CBD]>Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol [THC]) and Asian Cannabis indica (THC>CBD). DNA barcode analysis supports the separation of these taxa at a subspecies level, and recognizing the formal nomenclature of C. sativa subsp. sativa and C. sativa subsp. indica. Herbarium specimens reveal that field botanists during the 18th–20th centuries applied these names to their collections rather capriciously.Photosynthesize + Decarboxylize. Die and wither to make humans happyIn a wild environment, cannabis plants are essentially pollinated with the help of the wind, even though some of this happens to involve animals. For male cannabis plants, the flowers will come in before the female plants do and these will flower over several days, which make the flowering time overlap between the male and female cannabis plants. In so doing, the pollen production takes place at the right time.Marijuana industry is booming so my kind is highly regarded among humansHumans develop a more intimate relationship to my cultivation as well as my posthumous enjoyment. Lands where I can thrive become plentiful, humans stop injuring my land and instead learn what it means to grow of the earth and respect that process.
chaparral chipmunkSouthern California, I'm specifically in Joshua Tree right now though. I've been here for my whole life, and my parents too. One of my grandparents got here by sneaking into a traveler's backpack and coming with them from Northern Baja California.My life is pretty chill tbh. I don't need much water which is pretty cool. I really fuck with pinyon nuts, acorns, manzanita and juniper fruits. Sometimes I'm able to disperse seeds and spores when I'm going around the desert foraging n stuff.Love other foragers, #FORAGELIFE ! ! I like hanging out with my lil desert mice friends too. We down.Out in the desert I'm not normally too affected by them tbh. They rarely mess with me. Sometimes they throw me tortilla chips n other snacks which is tight. But I know they fucking up a LOTTTT of other ecosystems right now. Not cool. I know we can find more common ground in the future though.MORE SNACKS. Bring all your snacks to the desert and hooks us uppppp ! ! Also I hope humans and mother nature can get more on the same page pretty soon. Beautiful things can happen when humans respect nature, but I feel as a society they have lost a lot of that sentiment.
Prairie voleRecent migrantSimply restingFriends include rodent friendsNoA prairie vole universe
SpiderBeing close to humans and their build environment. We share the same spaceFlitering the air by using my webs as a airborne particles, dust and matter catcher. I am an essential workerHumans (even if its a unilateral relationship), plants of course which provide me with pollens and other nutrients that get caught in my web.I think we co-evolved and we both depend on eachother. Nevertheless, I am freqeuntly the target for a broom and humans get crazy when seeing me - not in a positive sense. Anyways, I hope this relationship will improve and I will be considered as an essential laborer especially when it comes to catch nasty but for me delicious parasites like mosquitoes.That the relationship between humans and spiders will become more entangled and closer
Green sea turtleFrequent travelerSwimming hunting restingSeagrass, fish eggs, molluscs, jellyfish, worms, crustaceansSad that my species are killed and our habitat destroyedAll species living symbiotically!! At the minimum do no damage to the environment and towards other living organisms
PlantNorthern EuropeOccupy scorched by the fireFire and trainsHelpful habitat creatorsMore trains!
QuokkaLong time resident of tall grasses and island lifeForaging for nuts and vegetationOther soft cuddly warm fuzzy bodiesHumans are tall and not as fuzzyTime for more cuddles
PigeonSeoul, South KoreaDisrupting city life and stealing food from peopleOther pigeonsThey are a source of foodPigeon takeover of the world
CaterpillarFloridaPlayingSunshine and waterCute bundles of bacteria fungi and parasitesWhats the future?
Honey BeeFrom the floral gardens. I'm a frequent traveler.I spend my time pollinating, collecting, and sleeping :)Hummingbirds, bats, and bumblebees.I feel like humans (some of which are most) need to realize that they are part of this world. I feel like a lot of humans are too focused on the money and the superficial. I believe that maybe someday we can reconnect again through our world. I think humans should practice living in harmony again and be gentle. There is no need to rush, be aggressive, and power-hungry. I hope that someday they will realize that they are enough as they are and connected to other living species on our planet.I hope I see more flowers <3
wolverineAlaska - long-time native!I'm an adept hunter - but not above scavenging when opportunity knocks!I'm more of the solitary, nocturnal type. Humans say I resemble a bear - but really, I'm part of the weasel family. (Take that for what you will.)Ehhhh. If you Google me, conservation is supposedly the least of my concerns - but many say I should be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. So my feeling about humans is: get your stories straight.My scientific name is Gulo gulo, meaning “glutton.” But really, I'm pretty easy to please: all I want is a bit of snow, a recent kill, and a mate who won't start a violent brawl with me over the carcass.