GOLDSMITHS  //  BA Design
2020



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SOIL / CARE / SELF

Marguerite Bliard

Soil
Care
Self






I look, I ask around, I repeat

They read, you think, we create

We plant, we look

Wait

One two three leaves

They think, we think

Earth whispers, they record, we listen

We dig, we plant, we talk

Together we care about caring for soil
Together we care about caring for ourselves

Soil-care is about sharing and giving. It is about reading and waiting, digging and smelling...

I have been really interested in the idea of gardening to both improve our wellbeing and save our broken planet. Living in a city as big as London, we don’t usually have close access to green spaces, and we forget how beneficial it is to spend time with our hands deep in the soil.

Throughout the year I have experienced with different actions of care on the soil in my garden in London, in the community garden and in Brussels. I have joined and created communities, I have worked with others around the topic of care towards the soil and have invited some to improve their personal human-soil relations.

We, now more than ever, need to care. Care for the planet, care for ourselves, care for one another. Soil-care does all that. It is an activity that requires community and mutual aid, it gives us social support, wellbeing and improves our environment. More than an occasional hobby or occupation, soil-care needs to be part of tomorrow. We must reconnect with nature to explore what it can give us in terms of food, medicine, and material.

The outcome of my project consists of a website containing an explanatory text, an interactive film through the garden, and instructions on how to perform soil-care. Its aim is to raise awareness about the crucial role soil-care needs to take in tomorrow’s society. Initially it was to be used by people in isolation, like in this confinement, who don’t have access to green spaces. As the situation evolved, so did my outcome. I realised that its audience expanded to anyone who wishes to use the website as inspiration and as a manual to reengage with nature, to profit from the virtues of nature and soil-care. Ultimately, I would like to develop my project into a tool for landscape architects and city designers to understand the need for soil-care on a larger scale like in the conception of urban recreational areas.