permaculture

Art on the Verge of Permaculture

Fieldwork - Whip-poor-will installation by Cresky, Walter and Osler

Whip-poor-will is a collaborative effort between artists Marc Walter (Wakefield), Lisa Creskey (Chelsea) and Susie Osler (Maberly).  They created it over 3 days of sourcing materials - branches, logs and material on-site that were the 'refuse' from winter cleanup at FIELDWORK mixed with layers of rotten hay and leaves.  The installation includes a large ceramic whip-poor-will by Cresky, and over 100 small white, seed-embedded, unfired clay moths by Osler placed within the 'nest' - that are meant to be 'distribtuted' around the site by visitors.  The nest is built to human scale - encouraging people to enter and 'feel' like a whip-poor-will might - camoflaged by its surrounding sanctuary or startled by the intrusion of others.  

The nest is located on the verge between the field and forest - a place symbolically situated between the 'cultured' (field), and wild' (forest).  Verges as we know are places that often host great diversity of life, or perhaps creativity...

The whip-poor-will is a rare bird in some parts of Ontario.  At FIELDWORK we are lucky to have a perfect habitat for these birds and each year they return to haunt us with their evening and dawn mantra..."Whip-poor-will-whip-poor-will-whip-poor-will-whip-poor-will-whip-poor-will-whip-poor-will...."

Whip-poor-will  will remain here permanently.  Next spring the artists plan to cover the entire structure with more forest debris, soil and hay and plant into it - in the hopes that over time it will break down, contributing habitat to the local flora and fauna.  The installation is, in effect, an example of Hugelkultur meeting art...   And one of art that works in and with the land - taking both inspiration and materials from the site and cycling them creatively into a new form that hopefully leaves a positive footprint on the landscape and the imagination.
 

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