Born from the Soil
Exhibition on from 27th of September until the 16th of November 2019 at the Courthouse Gallery & Studios, Ennistymon, c. Clare.
My exhibition idea started at the Zero
Waste festival in 2017, in Dublin.
When I moved to Clare in 2018 I met Anne Mulle and I got the opportunity to work on Born from the Soil again. An amazing woman called Becky helped me with the idea around soil fertility, she is a soil scientist very passionate about what she does and I wanted to work on plants that nourish the soil and create biodiversity.
I split the exhibition in plants that are good for food consumption and pollinators, other than amazing to brake up the soil to avoid compaction; the second half are green manures, wild and cultivated ones: vetch, broad bean, rye grass, phacelia, buckwheat.
I layered the element of soil in 4 transparent jars: one for air, one for water, clay and sand.
A sample of a soil profile from the land I co-own has been dogged out by me, Becky and Maria, both working for UCD. It's amazing to see how the soil changes deep down.
A stump of Sitka spruce with mycelium on it is left on a corner to highlight the danger of its plantation; it causes the soil to be acidic and loosing fertility after the trees are harvested. The land will be used a couple of times with pesticide and fertiliser to grow non native tree but the land will be eventually so acidic that nothing will grow again.
In the center of the room dried flowers are dried and left into hanging test tubes, underneath a box full of healthy peaty soil. The connection we have with soil is strong, but sometimes we forget is the womb for every beautiful plants that nourish our life with beauty and food.
A video of a day of work collecting seaweed is shown. Seaweed is a great source of nutrients and it can be used as a mulch. November is a great time to start spreading washed out seaweed on the beds to increase fertility. This mulch helps to avoid weeds growing and to keep slugs away. Slugs don't like slipping on the salt.
We organised a talk at the Community Center in Ennistymon as part of my exhibition: Remaking Our Earth: Organic Farming and Soil Degradation in Ireland.
I am working on another post with attached video of the event coming soon.
Thanks so much to the people who filled up the room and everyone who helped us spread the voice.