Updated: Mar 7
I want to tell you a love story. It's a love that I didn't see coming and it's the reason I'm here today. It's a love of trees, water, soil, sunshine and animals. It's rooted in places like Smugglers Notch Vermont and Golden Lake Ontario. It's grown to include urban green spaces, balcony gardens and chickadees. It's my love for this Earth.
Twelve years ago when my first son was born I found myself wandering around the forest like I did when I was kid. Something woke up inside of me. I found myself wanting to be closer to the Earth so I started spending as much time as possible outside. I became connected to the rhythm of our seasons. I started growing my own food, got to know the trees and animals that live here, went for hikes, swam in creeks and camped in the mountains. I became part of this place.
It's from this deep love and commitment to protect the Earth that the seasonal art boxes were born. I want to share this love and help bring more art and nature into people's lives. David Sobel wrote many years ago that we must "give children a chance to love the earth before we ask them to save it". I think the same is true for adults. But how can we love the Earth if we spend our life indoors? How can we love something that we don't spend time with? We have to learn its secrets and see its beauty. We have to linger for long enough for moments of wonder and intimacy to happen. Making art with nature, in nature, is a great way to encourage these moments to happen.
The Spring Art Projects are some of my favourite because they'll give you a chance to get intimate with the world around you. My wish is that you come home with dirt on your jeans, an armful of sticks and a smile on your face. I hope that you free yourself from ideas of what your art should look like. It's about the process of creating, about getting to know yourself and the world around you, not the end product. I hope you'll join me for this liberating and joyful experience.