Seeds: A Studio for Arts and Health

August 27, 2012

Over the course of the summer an arts residency at Moorehall Healthcare (Ardee, County Louth) has developed an art studio devoted to exploring the interiors of plants (through microscopic images) and the magnified shapes of wildflower seeds and various root systems. Residents from Moorehall Retirement Village and Moorehall Lodge have explored these shapes through drawing, creative writing, photography, crochet, printing, sewing and paper mache. The title of the project was inspired by a book written by Rob Kesseler and Wolfgang Stuppy of The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew entitled Seeds: Time Capsules of Life. Seeds combine the past, present and future; they are inter-generational and sophisticated. Each seed is a vessel,  a life force waiting for the right conditions within which to flourish.  These themes can be applied to the creation of an arts and health studio, whereby participants can produce artworks which grow as a collective ecology of connections which influence each other.


The studio offered participants an opportunity to work  with a variety of art materials, and to display their work as a collection of different ideas and perspectives. The botanical nature of the studio was intended to interact with the planting of three new garden areas located within Moorehall Retirement Village. These three gardens composed of wildflowers, herbs, cottage garden flowers, soft fruits and vegetables were created in conjunction with 4th Class students at Scoil Mhuire na Trocaire to mark the European Year of Active Ageing and Intergenerational Solidarity (2012).

Within the studio participants shared poetry, music, a selection of herbal tonics and discussed the artworks of artists who work with ecological themes, such as Katie Holten, Herman de Vries, Richard Long and Chris Drury.

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