Irish Seed Savers Association are delighted to have collaborated with visual artist Rachel Doolin to create a national exhibition. This exciting project is part of our focus to raise awareness about the importance of seed sovereignty, biodiversity, food security and our food heritage.
The exhibition titled HEIRLOOM launched in the Lexicon Cultural Centre in Dún Laoghaire, Dublin on December 10th 2022 and runs until March 5th 2023. This is a super exciting collaboration and celebration of seeds with an artist who has been working in the background with Irish Seed Savers for the past two years. The concept behind the exhibition stems from Rachel’s visit to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault during an artist residency in the high arctic in 2017. In 2019, Rachel contacted Irish Seed Savers to discuss the potential for creating a seed focused exhibition that will present many aspects and stories relating to the ‘seeds of today’. The project is supported through the DLR Lexicon Visual Arts Commission Exhibition Award and an Arts Council of Ireland Visual Arts Project Award.
For this exhibition Rachel created a sculptural installation titled SEEDARIUM – a sacred space where viewers are able to enter and ponder the beauty and profundity of seeds. For this sculptural piece, Rachel and Irish Seed Savers invited our community of growers, seed advocates, individuals, cultivators, weeders, waterers, minders, and seed savers to contribute through submitting seed contributions for exhibition within the SEEDARIUM sculpture. In total 32 people contributed seeds for the SEEDARIUM. A book of contributors that lists the seeds, the collectors and their words is exhibited alongside the SEEDARIUM.
On January 14th you can join artist Rachel Doolin and journalist Ellie O’Byrne on an informal walk and talk through the Heirloom exhibition, as they discuss the six-year process that led to her seed-inspired project. Starting with Rachels visit to Svalbard Global Seed Vault in Norway, where over a million seeds are stored to protect the biodiversity of crops, the conversation will cover Rachel’s time working with gardeners, growers and seed savers in Ireland and around the world.