Planted 23 July to 14 August
Welcome to the Art Walk’s new Popup Project Room; a space to find out more about our recent residency based projects, and artists’ associated works, exploring ways of working that connect and build communities near & far.
Where to Find Us:
189 Portobello High Street (Portobello Baptist Church space)
Thurs/Fri 11 to 4 | Sat 11 to 5
Our first exhibition, Planted, shows a series of installations, artworks & short films that draw upon the physical act of planting and relationships with the natural environment. Collectively the works raise discussion around the value of growing one’s own food, acts of sharing, the strengthening of neighbourhoods, along with ecological considerations. Experiences of the pandemic also interweave their way through many of the works, relecting upon about what edible growing spaces can provide at times of adjustment, and change.
Plot55b & The Seed Library (2019-21) Felicity Bristow & Susie Wilson
Plot 55B’s two-year residency at Craigentinny & Telferton Allotments has developed into a flourishing sharing of seed. Bristow+Wilson’s installation shows the way the two artists have continued to work together, whilst apart, during the lockdown with a series of works mailed to each other recording this time. Touching the earth, planting the seeds and tending the growing plants was something positive and hopeful for many people in the growing community, in such an uncertain and anxious time. The seeds became the focus to their work and made them realise the importance of ‘the seed’ to this commission.
Felicity & Susie have since established ‘The Seed Library’, which comes out of the generous exchange, or growing tips from plot holders and visitors and connections made sending out seeds. The delight and quiet of spending time growing something and protecting it as it matures was felt to be very rewarding by many people growing in isolation, as well as also mirroring the frustrations of lockdown restrictions when a plant was unsuccessful or a cornucopia of slugs had ransacked the seedlings planted out! It is hoped that the Seed Library can occupy a physical space post-pandemic supporting plot holders as a communal place for sharing seeds and seedlings. Their physical Seed Library along with a published book will be shown during the ‘Art Walk Porty Festival’ in September.
Felicity’s site-specific work is an exploration of line, narrative, material and the pervading spirit of place or ‘genius loci’. Felicity is fascinated with words, with making, researching and exploring the physical structure of books and buildings site specifically. Felicity studied architecture at Edinburgh College of Art (1993 – 99) and qualified as an architect, practising in Edinburgh until 2008 while also teaching part time at ECA (2003 – 07). In Summer 2016 she completed a MA in Contemporary Art Practice, with Merit. She now lives and works as an artist in the Scottish Borders developing her own research-based practice in her WASP’s studio (Selkirk) and works part time for the Creative Arts Business Network (CABN) in Selkirk and North Light Arts in Dunbar.
Website: felicitybristow.com – Instagram: @felicitybristow
Susie's work examines the relationship between the hidden and the seen both metaphorically and physically. Exploring the book form enables her to combine print, paint and collage in a more sculptural way. The intimacy of holding the book, each page hiding then revealing the next, creates an atmosphere that is deeply personal. She is interested in this sense of revelation. Layers of translucent paper, stitched and cut into, obscure the forms and images creating a tension between the various areas reflecting the delicacy, fragility and subtlety of the subject. Susie Wilson graduated from Edinburgh College of Art in 1992 with a BA (Hons) Degree and PostGrad. in Drawing and Printmaking. She won two scholarships to Athens School of Fine Art (1990) and to Seville School of Fine Art (1992) to study printmaking. Her work is in the collection of the City Art Centre, Edinburgh Fine Art Library and Edinburgh College of Art. Recently awarded Sally Schofield Memorial Prize, (Visual Arts Scotland, 2015) and Nancy Graham Memorial Book Prize (VAS, 2014)
Website: susiewilson.org – Instagram: @susiewilson_
The Neighbouring Orchard (2020- ) Annie Lord
The Neighbouring Orchard project devised by artist, Annie Lord, offers young apple trees to households in Portobello, Musselburgh and Craigmillar, providing the possibility of apple harvests in years to come. At a time when we are physically distant from each other we look to planting trees as a way to forge links with people in neighbouring streets and suburbs. This individually planted, socially distant orchard is rooted in community and as the trees grow, bud, blossom and fruit we look forward to a time when we can gather together to enjoy the harvests.
The trees are planted in front gardens or shared gardens, ensuring that they are visible to the wider community, acting as markers for people on daily walks, seen from bus windows and from other household's windows. The apple varieties planted each have a historic link to the area, having previously been grown in local orchards in the 19th Century, with the first trees planted in early 2021. A second batch of trees will be available for planting in the winter 2021/22. Anyone interested in planting a tree, email email@example.com to join our mailing list.
Full details read here & Instagram: @neighbouringorchard
Annie Lord:Annie is a performer and visual artist based in Edinburgh. She trained in sculpture at The Slade School of Fine Art (London) before developing her work to encompass storytelling and live performance. Annie's work explores geographic and cultural histories and the ways in which they shape the present. Her performances draw on local history as well as having a fascination with material processes. She developed the idea for the Neighbouring Orchard out of an initial research period with Art Walk Projects about historic orchards in the area of Portobello with a performance at Donkeyfield Community Orchard in 2019.
Website: annielord.co.uk – Instagram @annie_lord_
Reading Towards Walking (2021) A&E (Jonathan Baxter)
is a collaboration between A+E (accident and emergency, art and ecology, art and education) and Art Walk Projects. Initiated by artist+curator, Jonathan Baxter, the project invites readers and walkers to consider walking as an art practice, walking as a metaphor and walking as a way of engaging with the climate and ecological crisis.
Six fortnightly reading and walking sessions have been scheduled to coincide with the opening of Art Walk Porty's new pop-up Project Room (189 Portobello High Street), where a library of relevant reading material can be found.
The meeting place for each session will vary – so please double check the location. But the form remains the same: a two-hour session, with a text selected and introduced by a different speaker and a short walk to reflect on the text.
Times and dates: 27th July, 10th Aug, 24th Aug, 7th Sept, 21st Sept, 5th Oct, 7-9pm.
To find out more or to confirm attendance please contact Jonathan at firstname.lastname@example.org or tel. 07954123543. Participants are welcome to arrive unannounced on the day but advance notice is encouraged.
More information and specific reading material for the sessions can be downloaded from the A+E website: https://artandecology.earth/reading-towards-action/.
We look forward to reading and walking with you.
Jonathan is an artist, curator and peer-educator. Since 2009 Jonathan has developed an innovative approach to public engagement and peer-education through a series of socially engaged art projects, peer-education platforms, curated exhibitions, and festivals. Jonathan’s work explores a wide range of topics with an underlying commitment to social, environmental and economic justice.
A+E braids the terms accident and emergency, art and ecology, art and education. With the aim of supporting Edinburgh City Council’s commitment to operate at net zero carbon by 2030, A+E offers an imaginative approach to rethinking the Cathedral in light of the climate and ecological crisis. We ask, how might the Cathedral become an ecological commons for the city and how might that shape a social and ecological art practice?
Websites: jonathanbaxter.me / artandecology.earth
Films & Projections:
When are you going to cut the grass? (2020) Joanne Matthews & Hsin-Yi Wang
With precise, comedic, performance and a perpetual mechanical soundtrack, ‘cut the grass’ satirises actions of control in the garden, situated in a world where things aren’t quite what they seem. Focussing on everyday occurrences of ecological destruction in the domestic setting it questions the idea of the ‘perfect garden’.
A Garden of One’s Own (2020) Joanne Matthews
A gardening manifesto inspired by the books of Virginia Woolf, the artist explores queering their relationship with their back garden, and in turn with themselves. Queering gardening means paying attention to places in the garden that are often discarded, liberating and embracing murky rough edges.
Joanne is an artist and producer based at Rhubaba in Edinburgh, working collaboratively across performance, audio, video, installation, photography and drawing. She conducts continual embodied fieldwork, tuning in to the constant becoming of places and ecologies, creating gestural works of art. She’s interested in leaning into and finding hope in, the darkness of the ecological crisis and the inseparable links between nature and culture. Her work is intimate, as she opens herself up to be vulnerable with the rest of nature through radical interventions.
Recent projects have led her to work with IUCN World Conservation Conference (Marseille) 2 Degrees Festival (London), Live Art Development Agency (London), Chapter Arts Centre (Cardiff), Scottish Sculpture Workshop (Aberdeen), Somerset House Studios (London), CCA Coventry, Artsadmin (London) and Unlimited (London).
Website: www.jojomatthews.art - Instagram: @jojo.maffyews
Hsin-Yi is a multidisciplinary artist with a design background. Influenced by the methodologies in architecture design, her practice responds to the environment and culture that surrounds her; currently, strongly inspired by the ancient geologic history in the Scottish landscape. Her work explores deep time, climate change and the Anthropocene. Hsin-Yi is from Taiwan and currently based in London.
Website: www.hsinyiwang.com - Instagram: @cynnwang_tw
Home is now (2021) Hayley Harrison
This text based moving image piece, projected onto house plants, (from 29 July to 14 August) explores a metaphysical journey through the artist's childhood-relationship with nature. She walks, runs, climbs and stumbles back through family homes, gardens, and fields. This animated rhythmic text is interspersed with the sound of exploding crisp packets. The sound acts as a punctuation mark, an abrupt reminder to return to the here and now. There is a sense of personal loss, and collective reflection, questioning humanities legacy through the metaphor of abandoned places and materials (in this case crisp packets).
Hayley is a multi-disciplinary artist working with abandoned materials (human and non-human) and forgotten spaces to start conversations about our disconnection with ‘nature’ and each other. She collects the debris of consumerism and organic materials from her natural environments: on rural walks, on the streets around her studio in London, or the towpaths around her narrowboat on which she lives. These materials are re-appropriated into a range of artifacts and outcomes – most recently text inscribed in soil and leaves, performances with pavement ‘weeds’, and video projected onto landscapes. These are the starting point for her community projects. She has also been awarded an Arts Council England DYCP grant for her project ‘Practicing Outside’ and is currently trying to discourse with plants and other non-humans.
Website: hayleyharrison.co.uk - Instagram: @hayley_harrison_
'Planted' has been conceived & curated by Rosy Naylor,
artist & founder of Art Walk Projects