Digitizing the Visceral: Making Together in the Space Between

We Need Your Help!

This summer, visiting artist, Sarah Holloway, will be building a digital garden that ‘uploads’ the Means of Production garden (MOP) and  Trillium North Park Garden (TNP) to a website. Acting as a digital counterpart to the physical gardens, the online version of MOP and TNP will allow for information and commentary on the plants and gardens to be transmitted from afar. Visual and text-based documentation of MOP and TNP will be displayed alongside an ever growing repository of local, ecological art practices provided by EartHand community members.

Sarah will be coding the digital garden using photographs, drawings and text descriptions – created with input from the EartHand community – in order to map and record  MOP and TNP. The website will be a digital weaving of imagery and lived experiences in the gardens. The act of synthesizing the collected data is similar to the undulation of weft above and below the warp in a woven textile. We are calling out to our EartHand community members to help weave this website into reality.

The project will occur in two phases.

The first phase will begin in June 2020 and will involve on-the-ground mapping of MOP and TNP. With the help of community volunteers, these spaces will be translated into hand-drawn maps, drawings of plants, text descriptions/ID’s and photographs.

Sarah will use the information collected to interpret a map that represents the two spaces. This map will be used as the blueprint for the creation of the digital garden.

The second phase  will be undertaken from July to September and begin by integrating the map made in the first phase with coding. Data collected earlier along with feedback from community members will be used to build the online garden. Through this internet-garden, others near and far can experience – online – the visceral experiences that a physical, growing landscape offers.

For more information on the project or how to get involved email Sarah at earthandmapping(at)gmail.com

Sarah Holloway is a student at the Rhode Island School of Design, studying furniture design and sustainability. Sarah is in Vancouver for the summer and EartHand is thrilled to have her explore this project to help her connect to this place, while weaving our gardens into an online format

Sarah says about her work:
Blending traditional and contemporary fabrications, I seek to create a feeling of humanness through automated objects. The wellbeing of the people and the land I interact with through my work is of utmost importance and defines the parameters I work within. Letting go of my intentions on how something should look or act, I let the place significantly influence the methods I create within, by considering the vernacular and the welfare of it.

Sarah’s physical work can be found here.

Artists talk on July 7th What is a Digital Garden?

get your free ticket

The language of how we describe experiences in the environment and computation are intertwined. The internet is described as water, social media as a mycelium network and navigating digital spaces as ‘surfing the web’. In turn, computational language has been used to describe the natural world. Close to home, Oliver Kellhammer described Means of Production Garden as “an open source landscape…” In visiting artist Sarah Holloway’s talk she will discuss how the linguistic connections between the natural world and computer science lead to exchanges of ideas between ecology and computation. Focusing on one such exchange, Sarah will break down the term ‘digital garden’. From acoustic ecology pioneered in Vancouver during the 1970s to a memory garden for the morning of those who have passed away from COVID-19 and police brutality, the talk will examine how new media has interacted with ecology and how they have influenced her own work in growing a digital garden for Earthand.

Over the course of the summer Sarah has been mapping and observing  EartHand’s two community gardens: their plants and their harvestable materials. Sarah will be making an online resource for the community to use to access information on the gardens and community members ecological art practice and research.

Join us for this talk, What is a Digital Garden?, to better understand the project, Digitizing the Visceral: Making in the Spaces Between, and get an overview of the adjacent workshops being led throughout the month of July.