Archive for June, 2010

zest fest

what better thing to do in citrus season than to have a citrus celebration? Beechmont is a really small, very progressive community with a wealth of talented folks. This last weekend, a day was organised at a local citrus farm with local food stalls, beauty products, workshops, music and cooking demos. all proceeds went back to the community and everyone that came along was presented with a bag of organic local citrus goodies including mandarins, lemons, limes, grapefruit and kaffir lime leaves.

it was a smash hit and heaps of fun, if you would like any more info have a look in my link section on the right of the blog for Beechmont community website

local citrus farm

citrus gifts

growers advice

confined spaces band


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relocating my studio

As an artist, I have lately been asking myself the question of…. how earth friendly is my practice? Printing my work on cotton rag paper, Hannemulle 330gsm paper, matte, glossy, aluminium, silk, anything of any description has left me feeling uneasy. So I have relocated my studio to the garden, using my medium of photography at the moment to document the cycles of the garden, in doing this, perhaps i will find a more sustainable way to express my arts practice, itself in a process of growth and renewal and transformation. Perhaps other artists may also start to question their own practices and take a leap and find more earth friendly ways of expression. stepping lightly has come to the forefront of my life and so in all aspects of my cooking, gardening, transport, art production…everything…I am trying to be more conscious.

I am not sure where this path will lead me, I don’t know the outcome and I have no expectations of enlightenment, all I know is the thought of printing up one more image is untenable for me right now.

so here is my latest installment on the ever closer closed loop of the Bower farm and Studio….

Its time for a rotational rest of part of the garden, the bok choy and pak choy are in flower, so i have left one of them to go go to seed and the rest go to the chooks and Harvey, who seem delighted, I cleaned out the chook beds, now really fertile with chook poo. If you have no access to good animal manure, I can recommend organically produced, Cicken pellets, it comes in 25kg bags, its slow release and brilliant for booting soil microbes. Also Lucerne hay is great for nitrogen adding, it will produce plants that pop up and you just turn them in to the soil before they go to seed. the soil will be ready for planting come spring and then i will choose another section of the garden to rest and replenish.

flowering veges

happy harvey

resting spaces

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I was lucky enough to see the film ‘FOOD INC’ last week. I was reminded of how powerful we are as individuals to instigate change. You can purchase the video at

http://www.foodincmovie.com/     it’s easy to buy local, organic produce. If you live in Brisbane or close to it have a look at  www.foodconnect.com.au

buy local, plant non hybrid seeds, know where your food comes from, be responsible, be loving.

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my birthday present from wendy

If you’re having trouble deciding what to give a friend for a birthday or christmas present, look no further than organic garlic, potato’s, sweet potato, or pumpkin seeds. staples of the garden and of a simple diet. here is some beautiful aussie garlic that has already started to grow on its own, so its headed straight to the garden.

I was recently reading Resurgence magazine and came across a great article written by Satish Kumar called ‘food, beautiful food’

‘faced with the huge challenges of our time, it is easy to feel frustrated, depressed and powerless: ” what can I do to address monumental crises such as climate change, consumerism, hunger and social injustice?”

“The answer is as simple as it is disconcerting,” said E.F Schumacher.”We can each of us work to put our own house in order.”

Kumar goes on to say ” putting our house in order starts with our dining table, our kitchen, our garden and our shopping. In other words, our food.”

“In order to achieve this, we have to start paying attention to the whole process of growing, distributing and eating food. However busy we may be, if we have no time for gardening, cooking and eating together with our family and friends and guests, then we have no time to live, no time to preserve the beauty of the planet.” (resurgence march/april 2010 p3)

andrew's dad's mandy's

Tasty Zests

My work mate Andrew recently bought some mandarin’s to share for smoko. His Dad planted the tree from some seeds he had bought up here from a favourite tree in Newcastle. apparently the tree is not grafted and his Dad grew trees from seeds on the kitchen windowsill.

Im excited. so I’m going to try the seeds and see what happens, not the standard way I thought a mandarin would grow…but hey, they tasted so good Im giving it a go. no rootstock, no grafting….nothing to lose

A little baba ganoushing

roasting eggplant

baba ganoush

So here is my world famous Baba Ganoush recipe…you need to roast carefully one eggplant over smouldering embers, you get that smoky flavour, until the eggplant splits and the juices start to run out. carefully peel the skin off, and mix it with the juice of one lemon, a fair spoonful of tahini and a clove of garlic and a pinch of good salt. voila, bet its the best you’ve had!

kiss me over the garden gate

My new body of work is all about Heirloom seeds. The type of seeds that grow and the go to seed and then grow again, true to type, for generations, you can hand them onto your children and they your grandchildren, they have no ‘terminator gene’ implanted in them and they often taste sensational and are a treat to all your senses.

as my main medium is photography I am aiming to educate through art the importance of these seeds and saving them and preserving the world’s biodiversity.

this image is taken in my garden and its title is:

‘kiss me over the garden gate’

stay posted for more images from the series coming very soon.

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