“The Plot” is a multi-media art project portraying an allotment in the Guinea Gardens, Edgbaston. Guinea Gardens is one of Birmingham’s oldest allotment sites with a 173 year old social history and the last remaining example in Birmingham of groups of detached rented gardens which once encircled the nineteenth-century city. The allotment provides peace and tranquility, access to land and nature, a healthy lifestyle and the opportunity for myself and fellow artist Colin Monk to grow and share organic vegetables. We manage the site with as little impact on the environment as possible, we cycle there and back, we garden without the use of petrol or battery-operated gardening power tools, we use only organic homemade fertilisers and plant foods and create our own compost. We have also created a large pond, an insect hotel, and on site sculptures from discarded materials.
The project, which took two years to complete, is not a documentary, it is a meditation that uses the media of photography, paintings and four four minute video’s to depict the variety of gardening activities associated with each season. The Plot has so far been exhibited at the Winterbourne House and Garden, (September 2018) and Lightwoods House and Park in Bearwood. (April 2019)
We believe the project is a useful tool for any public and private organisations actively seeking to improve the health and well being of their respective client groups through gardening.
The Insect Hotel video video, made separately to The Plot, was created for the Sutton Coldfield “Feel Good Film Festival”.