Monday, December 13, 2010

Inspiration for Monday morning!

Whilst visiting Abigail Doan's wonderful blog this morning I found two article's I wanted to post on here. Read about her at the She describes herself as:

"a writer and environmental fiber artist residing in NYC and Europe. 
My eco-textile and art farming projects are a means to create sustainable 
solutions and visual links to the global challenges we collectively face."

 This eco-art blog I like to visit for inspiration featured artist Kevin Inkawhich some time ago and the Seed Project which I'll focus on  as well.

'Kevin Inkawhich crafts the most heart palpitatingly natural mobiles. Using dried leaves, seeds, pods, branches, and delicate wire armatures, his floating sculptural pieces make any room or exhibition space flutter with organicism. They are lyrical, resourceful, and an homage of sorts to the fact that the best design is always, in essence, nature-based.'

Kevin Inkawhich

 Also at Abigail's blog:

Ruth Asawa in her San Francisco studio via Community of Creatives

this article below on Abigail Doan is well worth a read:

Returning to and from THE LAND: Connectivity and Crafting Residency


THE LAND/an art site is located eighty miles southeast of Albuquerque in the
pinon and juniper-scented foothills of New Mexico's Manzano Mountains. The pueblo mission ruins of Salinas National Monument are situated nearby, as is the train-whistle-punctuated town of Mountainair, the former pinto-bean capital of the world and the now faded hub of the Santa Fe Railway. As THE LAND's September 2006 artist-in-residence, I prepared myself for an immersive week of surveying and studying the unique characteristics of this remote art and conservation site.

all images form the Land Views site.

also from Landviews:

Abigail Doan is an environmental artist and activist. Her work has been exhibited in conjunction with the United Nation's Environment Programme, Art into Action/The Natural World Museum, and in group exhibits worldwide. Abigail is a contributing editor to, where she writes about art farming, craft, and the use of fiber in the landscape. She recently exhibited her 'Crocheted Snow' series at Lafayette College's Williams Center Art Gallery, in an exhibit called, "On Ice". Her work appears on, in periodicals such as Knit Knit, and in the recently published book, Craftivity. Her 'Tumbleweeds' will be exhibited this April in the show, "Stretched Threads", at The Atlantic Center for The Arts in Central Florida. For more information on Abigail's projects, go

NOW... the next thing I wanted to share found at Abigail's blog was this:

watch this one minute video!


Matthew Gehring

Monica Hernadez

Joan Fitsimmons

Gina Fuentes Walker - apple seeds

The Seed project began in 2006 by David Cohen, an installation artist.

The Seed project engages people all over the world plant to plant seeds creatively, creating individual art projects. The growth is then documented digitally. The digital images are compiled and placed together to form a “Virtual Field”  that can be seen  online. The components of the actual field exist in many separate places at once; sort of a diaspora of plants.
The plants can be grown freely in any configuration the planter chooses and the images can express the individuality of the grower as well. Planters are also free to choose to grow whatever seeds they choose. The three criteria are that the plants must be:

1 non-spreading,
2 non-invasive and
3 grown legally.
When a person participates by planting the seeds they become connected to a collective group of artists and activists. There are opportunities to meet potential collaborators and work creatively on other projects separate from the Seed Project. The seed becomes symbolic of these new collectives. 

School project

Anyone can join in this seed project!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

counting the inheritance...

'counting the inheritance' -close up.

'Counting the inheritance' is the title of a work from the recent show that I painted some time back. It seemed a fitting title to a work that was a gesture to the seed banking of australian species... and this image above is a section of that work. In the Lab there is considerable counting of one kind or another... weighing, measuring... data entries... processes that are all part of the work behind the scenes for the Seed lab. Counting the inheritance is also a play on that standard idea of what makes an inheritance -  it challenges ideas of what matters, what we want to leave behind... what is valuable in the first place.

In the recently published book ' Homage to the Seed' I included a section on the Seed Lab at Mt Coot-tha, part of the QLD 'Seeds for life' - UK Millennium Seed Bank joint project. These pages are from that book and may be read in a larger format by clicking on each image. This a tribute to the people I collaborated with around that project over the year!

See other posts for more information or alternatively you may email for details.

For the past 5 months I've been working from the studio below and I included this heart-felt thank you to my kind sponsor in the book!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Homage to the Seed residency show at Herbarium, Brisbane Botanic Gardens, Mt Coot-tha

The Herbarium at Mt Coot-tha was the setting for the December exhibition of the residency artwork in 'homage to the seed'.


The book contained material from across the year ... covering the role of the seed lab and the collaboration with Jason Halford from the lab.... as well as touching on various other aspects of public engagement carried out during the project. There was an overview on the ideas and passion behind the project going back many years and material was also included on the 2010 International Year of Biodiversity that  'homage to the seed' did in part respond to.  Journal pages as well as artworks were included in this book along with an essay written by Kevin Wilson, director of Artworkers Alliance (see end of post for essay).

The following piece is an overview of painting in 2010 during the residency written for the book.


fossil seeds

Eucalyptus seed capsule

seeds and pods of Leopard tree

fossil seeds

'and the world was made fruitful'

'and the world became bright'



'archaic, yet reverberating still I'

'archaic, yet reverberating still II'

'from the nothing the abundance'

Essay by Kevin Wilson on the exhibition:

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Y O U   A R E   M O S T   W E L C O M E  T O   A T T E N D   T H I S   
U P C O M I N G   E V E N T  ! ! !

The residency is drawing to a close with the end of the year fast approaching ... this exhibition will take place next week over 3 days on the grounds of the Botanic Gardens at the Herbarium which is located just 30 metres on from the Administration building (where the Library is to be found).  See the invitation below!

The space is shared with the Annual Botanical Artist's Society of Qld's Botanica exhibition.... open daily from 10 am till 4 pm  ( 3pm on the Sunday!)

I will post the works from the show after it closes at the Website. All works will be for sale, along with a 68 page book (21 x 23 cm) I have produced on the  Homage to the Seed Project ($30)  and  several Postcard designs which will be available as well. For the wonderful bloggers who already asked if there would be a book available with journal images... this does contain 12 pages from my journal, a section on paintings, other visuals from the seed lab and so on. I have included pages on events from the year with a double page spread on the postcards from the blogosphere Mail-Art exhibition.

If you have any enquiries don't hesitate to email or  leave a comment which comes through my email anyway! I have not set up paypal... but once the show is concluded I can certainly address that if needs be.

book on the residency project

Friday, November 12, 2010

Unruly ecologies: Biodiversity and art

Taking place in Perth, November 26 to 28 - A Symposium on Biodiverisity and Art.

NB: just noticed 25.1.2013... the images are no longer available here. 

unruly ecologies: biodiversity and art

Last week I was contacted by Perdita Phillips from the University of Western Australia's research centre:

SymbioticA - Centre of Excellence in Biological Arts

SymbioticA is an artistic laboratory dedicated to the research, learning, critique and hands-on engagement with the life sciences. 

Under the direction of Oron Catts, SymbioticA’s emphasis is on experiential practice. SymbioticA facilitates a thriving program of residenciesresearchacademic courses,exhibitionssymposiumsseminars and workshops. Researchers and students from all disciplines work on individual projects or in interdisciplinary teams to explore the shifting relations and perceptions of life.

As a research centre within the School of Anatomy and Human Biology at The University of Western Australia, SymbioticA enables direct and visceral engagement with scientific techniques. Crossing the disciplines of art and the life sciences, SymbioticA encourages better understanding and articulation of cultural ideas around scientific knowledge and informed critique of the ethical and cultural issues of life manipulation.  
SymbioticA is a recipient of the inaugural Golden Nica in Hybrid Arts at Prix Ars Electronica.

Perdita Phillips wrote that she was
         "putting together an online survey of art relating to biodiversity in preparation for a symposium Unruly ecologies: biodiversity and art that will be happening 26-28  November this year in Perth (see for details).  I would like to include your work in our online survey of artworks (here Your seed works are great examples of the blending of art and science."

I have been reading about Western Australia quite a bit this year, given the region south of Perth is one of the Biodiversity hotspots in the world. I have referred often to a book called 'Australian Seeds' which is focused on species from Western Australia. 

For anyone interested in  visiting the Biodiversity Art online showcase click here. There are 31 entries on broad ranging themes and approaches on this site to date. Im very sorry to not be free to attend the symposium at the end of November but will look forward to reading more on the speakers and topics through this website.

Artwork and text provided for inclusion on the showcase:

Homage to the Seed is the title of a year-long project conducted at Brisbane Botanic Gardens as 2010 Artist-in-Residence. This project was born of a collaboration with the on-site ‘Seeds for Life’ Seed Lab (set up by Kew Garden’s Millennium Seed Bank Project) with the underlying objective of spurring on public awareness  of the critical role of seeds and the human impact on global plant heritage. The seed lab was central to the project – a site of research, crucial dialogue with staff and volunteers, journal and weblog documentation.
Sophie Munns: Homage to the Seed project

To bring this somewhat obscure work to the public’s eye a strong accent on relational aesthetics practice was facilitated through a series of events which supported the key undertaking ‘to champion the seed’ to audiences unfamiliar with the extraordinary diversity and particular vulnerabilities of the world’s seed heritage . In electing to pursue this multi-layered approach to the ‘dispersal’ of information the material provided covered all bases… from simple to complex …encouraging both casual and formal engagement.  The weblog further boosted public engagement by traversing a broad spectrum of ideas around seeds, people, conservation, biodiversity, science and art.
The fact that the project coincided with the 2010 UN International Year of Biodiversity was an added catalyst which has drawn a new audience to consider our region’s plant biodiversity, local indigenous plants, and the vital relationships between the population, economy, land and plants.  Whilst researching the abundant species of Queensland rainforest fruits early this year the journal sketches and notations of cross-sections of the fruit’s seed capsules became the visual means for the artist to represent this manifest regional plant variation. Simultaneously literal and symbolic, they seemingly refer to ancient and perrennial symbolic languages across culture and time, yet allow for a contemporary imagining on biological diversity. This deliberation on biodiversity through time – past, present and future – and humanities’ place in all of that is the concern of the artist in this year of the Homage to the Seed residency.
Sophie Munns has been dedicated to the visual arts for over 3 decades — maintaining a professional art practice, working as a teacher and facilitator, and managing an arts related business.
Homage to the Seed Blog:

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Biodiversity is life, Biodiversity is our life


If you visit the website of the United Nations International year of Biodiversity you will find excellent resources available to learn more precisely:

  • The important role biodiversity plays in our lives and what is happening to it.
  • What people are doing around the world to combat biodiversity loss
  • How people are celebrating the International Year of Biodiversity
  • Some of the resources available to you in your celebrations

Read here for that.

If you go to this page of the website here you can see Homage to the Seed blog is listed along with a host of other blogs including one based in Byron Bay...not far from Brisbane where this blog is based.

Blogs from around the world

Lights of AfricaAfrica (English)
Lights of Africa - A Media Expedition Through Africa
By Haroldo Castro, an award-winning video director and producer, a photographer, a journalist and a communications strategist, and Mikael Castro, an anthropologist, communicator, and ecotourism-expert, passionate for conservation and travel.
ViajologiaAfrica (português)
Viajologia - Viajando com Haroldo Castro
Haroldo Castro possui três paixões: contar estórias com fotos e crônicas, estar na natureza e viajar intensamente.
Australia (English)
homage to the seed – generator of life
By Sophie Munns.
Guz Leonisky’s BlogAustralia (English)
It’s our ethical duty to stop our destruction of species. – BIODIVERSITY IS OUR RESPONSIBILITY 
Tangle of LifeAutralia (English)
Tangle of Life
By Mary Gardner, a biologist and a writer, she teaches at a local community college in Byron Bay, Australia. This blog is to help raise awareness about concepts and issues in biodiversity.
The blog uses social media and online discussions in getting the message out about the wealth of the world in the kingdoms of life. The blog features introductory articles, photos and links to showcase each kingdom. Also, Ebooks, with over 80 stories and over 300 photos, help readers glimpse biodiversity as a whole. .
Desarrollo rural lanzarote BlogCanary Islands (español)
Desarrollo rural lanzarote Blog
Por el desarrollo sostenible de los pueblos
New England AquariumKiribati and Phoenix Islands Blog (English)
Blog written by the New England Aquarium
Les ciències en el brochSpain (español)
Les ciències en el broch
By Ignasi Nebort & Pilar Safont
Window to NatureSri Lanka (English)
Window to Nature – The Weekly Environmental Diary by Malaka Rodrigo
Eco QuestionThailand (English)
Eco Question - Green Space for Thinking
Natures WhispersUnited Kingdom (English)
Natures Whispers
By Jasmine
Abstract City BlogUSA (English)
Abstract City Blog -
By Christoph Niemann
The WILD Foundation BlogUSA (English)
The WILD Foundation - "Talking" Wild
The i2P Amazon Expedition
The i2P Amazon Expedition team is assembling to depart for Brazil. There are 108 schools in six countries and a total of 15,266 students registered to follow the expedition!
The Edmonton and Area Land Trust
A conservancy focused on protecting natural areas and landscapes in our boreal/parkland region, for their biodiversity, habitat, health, EGS, aesthetic and other values.

Obviously there's room for more if you know of a Blog that could be added!

United Nations Environment ProgrammeUnited NationsConvention on Biological Diversity

Apologies for the space that can't be shifted below. Scroll down to continue to next post.
Thank you,
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