During this four day Immersion you will be going on daily Forest Therapy walks. On these walks you will be invited to use your heart, mind and hands to partner with nature to to explore the expressive arts. You will be using all of your senses, especially the heart sense to notice and honor a sense of place and to develop a deeper connection with the natural world. This connection can then inspire you to create art which could be a kind of narrative, beyond words, of your personal connection with the natural world.
We make an ephemeral connection with earth art when we build a snowman or sandcastle; carve a Halloween pumpkin or decorate easter eggs. Such art is often considered child’s play while ‘serious’’ art for adults is often housed in galleries and museums. In the 1960’s and 70’s, however, we developed more environmental awareness. The Land Art Movement began which connected art with the natural world. Some artists leading this movement, and working on a large scale, were Andy Goldsworthy, Robert Smithson, Steve Tobin, and Nils-Udo.
The land art movement (Tiberghien 1995; Kastner 1998) explores the aesthetic and reconnective power of art as it is embedded in the landscape. This art makes art out of raw materials of the natural space where it takes place and can be seen in the works of artists such as Andy Goldsworthy (2004). Goldsworthy’s aesthetic could be described as a deep connection and understanding of natural space and place and how art can interweave with nature to represent a narrative of a living space. Art here represents a pictorial narrative beyond just words and is an attempt to develop a language of human-nature relationships embodied in visual forms.
According to Theresa Sweeney, Ph.D., in her book ‘Eco-Art Therapy’, “The same wordless intelligence that permeates outer nature innately resides within you. The natural world mirrors yourself back to you. When you spend time with nature, it’s perfection, peace and joys within you come alive.”