TENDER relationships of care between people and plants | Édaein Samuels | Studio 12 Project

Studio 12 Project Residency 
Dates: 9 October – 20 October  2023
Location: Studio 12, Backwater Artists Group, Wandesford Quay

Backwater Artist  Network Member Édaein Samuels will be starting her Studio 12 project residency on the 9th of October 2023. 

Samuels Writes:
This residency is an opportunity to celebrate how plants enrich our lives through drawing and painting and exploring people-plant interactions. As plants grow, they develop characteristics which hint at their history and suggest the nuanced way they have adapted to their environment over the course of their individual existence. These characteristics give the impression of a personality to which I would like to respond to with my work. How I draw the plants and the materials I use will be a reflection of their physical state, the qualities they have and how they exist in Studio 12. I will explore how the presence of the plants and how the installation-style compositions of plant drawings will change the feeling of the space. I hope my explorations will encourage others to develop an interest in the benefits of tending to plants and subsequently developing a wider sense of care for the environment. To inform the work I will gather first-hand information on the kinds of relationships people share with their plants.

I would like to invite individuals to tell me about their plants via a dedicated Instagram page, by email (see below) or by arranging a visit with said plants. I will organise ‘Plant Show and Tell’ on Thursday the 12th of October where participants can bring their plants; and exchange stories, tips and ideas.

Thursday, 12 October | 4pm – 5:30pm | Studio 12

Please RSVP here: Calendly

With participants’ permission I will use the information shared to contribute to my work. The project will conclude with a short exhibition running from 5pm Thursday 19th and 20th of October. The event will open with a presentation of findings with a questions and answers session. Email: tender.plantstories@gmail.com

Arrange visit time: Calendly 

About the Artist:

Artist Bio

Édaein Samuels is a multi-disciplinary artist dividing time between portrait painting, drawing, life modeling and her practice as a circus artist and tutor. She is an alumni of Crawford College of Art and Design where she graduated in 2018 with a BA(Hons) in Contemporary Applied Art. She was awarded the Eli Lilly purchase prize and a place in the Lavitt Gallery ‘Fledglings’ emerging artists exhibition on merit of her degree show and has shown work at the Dublin Knitting and Textile Show 2018, the GOMA Gallery in Waterford and showed her painting ‘Remote’ in Lavitt’s Member’s exhibition and at O Mahony’s Restaurant where it was sold. As a circus artist Édaein is a professional member at Circus Factory and is part of a new comedy acrobatic duo called Those Two Idiots. She has produced two psychological video compositions performing on aerial hoop, called ‘Stuck’ (2020) and ‘Confined’(2021/22), both partly inspired by experiences during lock down.

Artist Statement

Édaein has been creating still life drawings of potted plants with mixed media and contemplating the relationship we have with these plants, mainly in our homes and places of work. She is exploring the companionship, the sense of ritual, and routine they provide. Along with this she is interested in studies of people-plant interactions which explore relationships with plants and how tending to plants and even engaging with representations of plants affect our mental and physical wellbeing. Sources of inspiration for these enquiries are the book A Cabaret of Plants by Richard Mabey who poses whether we should acknowledge plants as sentient beings and the writings of Artist/ Architect Pierre Hundertwasser in his essay about ‘Tree Tenants’ (1980-96) where he suggests we should worship trees and flora for their many amazing abilities to improve the environment, both in our cities and in our homes. Perhaps fostering deeper understanding and closer relationships with plants in our day to day lives will allow us to find positive ways to move forward in times when climate change is a tangible threat. Édaein’s overall approach to creative practice is to nurture exploration and intuitive responses to the interplay between concept and materials. She delights in embracing unexpected outcomes within technical processes. Edaein takes portrait commissions and loves depicting people and the colour in their character, catching movements and expressions as they interact or converse. Previous bodies of work have reflected on her personal experiences living with diabetes, and addressed the isolating effects of interaction with communication technology and explored the qualities of LCD screens.

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