In this blog entry I wish to give informative details about my Arts Council funded project and to clarify the direction my research and thinking is going in so far.

As a part of my research project  I am doing an artist’s residency at Scotswood Community Gardens (SNCG) in Newcastle. SNCG was established nearly 20 years ago and it was designed as a permaculture forest garden on a two-acre site.  There are orchards, wild flower meadows, woodland, several ponds and vegetable plots.
I have been a regular visitor to the gardens for over 5 years now, and during the last few months I have been venturing around the garden guided by my artistic agenda.
 I am there to gather images, videos and thoughts; collecting material towards the final art products and towards a workshop which I will run in the garden with the existing youth group.

My initial research premise is an exploration of how mythology is created from our relationship with the landscape/nature and how those mythologies can be informed and addressed by modern scientific and philosophical understanding of the world. At the core of this research idea is a deep ecological and political conviction that what is wrong now in the current environmental crisis is a lack of a meaningful relationship with the natural environment.

These last couple of weeks have seen a clarity in my thinking as to how the research will relate to a production of a body of art work. My time working in SNCG and reading such books as “Myth and Philospohy” by L.J. Hatab, Nick Lane’s ” Life Ascending” and Daniel Chamovitz’s ” What a Plant Knows” has set me thinking about links between permaculture and evolution and how these might be portrayed in a mythopoeic way.

On the one hand, I have been thinking about key ideas of Permaculture that leads to the creation of a sustainable, agriculturally productive environment; an edible ecosystem. On the other hand, I have been drawn to the “great achievements of evolution” as put forward by Nick Lane, namely : photosynthesis and to the third kingdom of fungi and their reproduction system. I am particularly interested in the fact that photosynthesis is a driving force of evolution and that it enables living organisms to create their own food. In contrast to this I am fascinated by the opportunistic and symbiotic fungi; their significant role in ecosystems and their complex reproductive system.

Within eclectic scientific and philosophical ideas I see the possibilities of a mythopoeic art landscape; a complex poetic narrative.

My project will culminate in an exhibition at Newbridge Project Gallery in Febuary. The exhibition will be curated by Arts Territory, from London. I will also produce a publication.
Images, thoughts and sketches from my work in progress to follow (daily!).


“Sustainability has got capacity to adopt its meaning to the prevailing conditions.  It is not a rigid system of rules, not a precept which tells us what to do in any possible situation. Ultimately, what it does is to give us a realm in which to experiment without the risk of failure, room to create new combination in order to learn from them and to make further new combinations. Sustainability is desirable in the sense that we don’t want to be eliminated from the evolution of living things.” ( Hans-Peter Durr )

I have been thinking about small, hard seeds and the growth that leads to wholesome fruit, harvested for human or animal consumption. Small hard seeds cultivated in mindful way; a sustainable practise for sustainable society.

I have plans for moving forward with my research  and unravelling  parts of it here, however, horizontally sprouting, my mind has been floating around and inside of bread- and it’s community context.
From grain to loaf, an all evolving process, which potentially is possible everywhere, creating moments of community, poetically terrorising in unexpected situations, art activism, resilience and integrity, growing, decaying, fermenting, every day- life death, every day bread. Reconsidering my practise and approaches, finding new ways of enquiry and experimenting, is continuously on my agenda. Home grown food, home grown bread, community for everyone!

Not long ago I wanted to engage in a very public sense and make with people volcanic island with volcano breads- nomadic urban islands was a project which I was organising with a few colleagues from The NewBridge studios. Each Urban Island was meant to have a unique creative autonomy, where artistic actions are open and non-determined; a place where the imaginary is a real construction of social relations that allow you to read and build things in a different way. Promise to myself: make the urban islands happen!

The thoughts about bread and community were brought to my mind through participating in an extraordinary event!
A week ago I went to Liverpool to take part in a very interesting professional development workshop, “Growing alternative art projects in sites of regeneration”.

The workshop was organised by Situations, in association with Liverpool biennial and its focus was on innovative strategies for public art, looking at two art projects where bread baking with communities and food production was used as an alternative mode for urban revitalisation .The workshop was hosted at Homebaked  Homebaked Co-operative Anfield, a working art project,community bakery and social enterprise which grew out of the 2010 commission, 2Up 2 Down, by artist Jeanne van Heeswijk.  And this very place- its history, geographical,cultural context, was the first focus of the workshop. It was such a perfect site to talk about bread and its wide context ! The bakery with its community,all its usual hustle and bustle happening in the background, scent of baking bread, chatter, regular customers,  the working place ambient, all of this was giving a very strong, uplifting impression of the workability of such projects.

Second to give insight into the project where bread/ food production was the substance of public art, was Amy Franceschini from Futurefarmers!
Amy’s talk was so very inspiring and mind opening! She was talking about her different projects, her attitudes and ideas, and how artist can bring transformation in our cities. Amy talk about ‘political process which you can eat’ , about interactive potential of space,and that ‘ the space is not an entity but a relationship- community”. Futurefarmers, were discussing the evolution of their project Flatbread Society, commissioned by Situations for Oslo harbour in Norway, its context, beginnings and how they sustained.

I have been a fun of Futurefarmers, for a while and I would love to form or/and be a part of this type of collective.You can do so much if there are like-minded people from diverse backgrounds to collaborate with!


Sharing and exchanging ideas, thoughts, practice is always enriching and enjoyable experience and now I want more. I felt very inspired and confident to follow through utopian ideas, initiate art-community situations, grow, bake, make, share!

Here are the notes on the Recipe for Success which was collaboratively written in the workshop:
Understanding of place: Historical / Political / Economic Context
Trust: (Re)building it with communities.Between artist & producer / commissioners
Language: Use of defining language such as “the artist”, “the audience” and “the client” can create barriers
Be bold: Just do it. Change will have taken place even if you have to stop.
Engage people: Where do the people go? How do they use their space?
Imagination: Art is not linear. It engages people and acts as a catalyst that results in outcomes that might not be anticipated.
Economic sustainability: Will it last? Is it meant to? Can some of the public art money be diverted to maintenance?
Give permission: Step away from the project and let others take over. Have interim contracts that protect but allow freedom
Commissioning: Strategies. Honesty on all sides. Why is the art being commissioned? What is the expectation? Professional approach. This is where the producer can act as a “translator”.


“On sustainability: it is a kind of discourse that implies a different kind of social relation. What I mean is, instead of doing philosophy, one is doing ecophilosophy, not in the environmentalist sense, but as the philosophy of a possible future. We are in the process of truly exhausting the possibility of futurity, be it at the purely ecological or at the social level. If we take this ecological dimension and transform it into a discourse on what it is that counts, where action is possible, we can then manage to think a nomadic subject in transformation, that is, immersed in transformative flows, but within limits that are not dictated by individualism or political belief – but by the sustainability in and of transformations.”

The other day I came across a tree covered in webs and thousands of caterpillars all over-consuming the tree, making the tree disappear (dead). A plague, a beautiful and spooky phenomena make me think about Hercules labors again! The small Ermine Moth, also known as the Yponomeuta evonymella, , is harmless. Favorable conditions bring the caterpillars out of their nest in search of food. The Yponomeuta evonymella become small moths after a few days.

The nature of my research brought me to many meadows, one of them was particularly awe and wonder inspiring! I decided to film it in special way, like wondering, floating eye could sea it. I have commissioned my technician to design an apparatus- a zip slider to do so.


“Principles of connection and heterogeneity: at any point a rhizome can be connected to anything other, and must be… A rhizome ceaselessly establishes connections between semiotic chains, organizations of power, and circumstances relevant to the arts, sciences and social struggles.” Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus.