ONE VISITOR TO ALLOTMENTA SAYS:
‘Really enjoyed the Open Day. These things I loved, just being there with all the mix of still-growing/dying/dead things around in a frame of mind that allowed letting them be as they are rather than (as one does in ones own garden) fretting about tidying, planting, sowing, not allowing weeds to get a grip etc. The weather and the top of the downs. Your drawings, the snail shells on sticks (pour encourager les autres), the table of stuck, arrested seeds, the poppy seedhead drawn in poppy seeds, the sense of community with everyone eating seedcake and enjoying the collection of material in the shelter, the humour creeping in in all sorts of ways, Roz sewn to a leaf, the picture frame/cold frame. The sense of movement and life, so different from your average gallery, snails, seagulls, crows, clouds, whatever the caterpillars are on the cabbages, cabbage whites? The mixture of information , observation and whimsy.’
OPEN DAY TODAY
We put up the gazebo in teaming rain. It began to clear half an hour before opening time and we rushed to set things out. The crow cawed as soon as I put up my board. We welcomed a good bunch of people who responded to the work. Useful comments and I learned you cannot see a laptop outside.
LAST DAY – FIRST SEEDS SOWN
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to actually sow some real seeds! Although the last few days have been busy with preparations for Open Day, I’ve been anxious to move on with some of the ideas which are rapidly developing. Throughout the residency I have been repeatedly returning to ideas about the relationship between indoors and outdoors, as well as issues of control and order and the often idealised view of nature.
Yesterday I continued my experiments, sowing some fast germinating seeds in my petrie dishes on a base of moist furnishing fabric.
Open Day tomorrow: Tuesday – Heavy, persistent rain will affect southern England and much of Wales for much of the day. Elsewhere, sunny spells, scattered showers in the northwest. Winds easing and feeling a little cooler.
OPEN DAY TOMORROW – TUESDAY 16 OCTOBER
We became attuned to the weather on the allotment residency. Open Day tomorrow may have to adapt to rain. Sent emergency email asking people to phone if it is raining. Our photos are stuck in the mail. But all other preparations are in hand. Seed cakes made. Exercise books stacked. Lessons marked.
STAND BACK AND LOOK
Have we seen things differently on the allotment?
Have we made a kind of home?
Are we collaborators?
May the seeds grow?
Which stalks of the new work will develop?
Have we been back to school?
Have I learned anything?
Am I daft?