Common Knowledge using art to promote plant education • Earth.com

Last update: September 20th, 2019 at 2:00 am

Common Knowledge is a project that promotes wild edible and medicinal plant education through a visual vocabulary of plant illustrations accessed through interactive and participatory learning tools. It is a cultural platform for sharing information and engaging with children and adults alike. Common Knowledge advocates for an increased awareness of our natural environment while promoting the idea that plant knowledge should exist as common knowledge. We conduct workshops, construct installations and created card games, and activity-based coloring books. All printed imagery contains common healing plants that are found in the environment in which the workshop or installation is held or wherever a Common Knowledge product is sold.

This project is an idea rooted in “green” philosophies, alternative pedagogies, nutritional activism and the principles of a gift economy. With our ever-increasing interest in alternative andnatural healing Common Knowledge intends to propagate multi-cultural conversations around our ages-old symbiotic relationship with the plant world, which provides us with physical, mental, emotional and spiritual sustenance. Common Knowledge will operate regionally and has started its journey by showcasing plants found in every city of the north eastern US. These species are strong, resilient and actively work to restore nutrients to damaged city soil. They also are not only superior in nutrition but are an example of strength, resiliency, endurance and perseverance against the conflicting odds of an urban landscape. Perhaps they can help guide us to do the same.

Artist Alyssa Dennis created Common Knowledge to promote education on wild edible and medicinal plants, found specially within the urban landscape, through a visual vocabulary of plant illustrations accessed through interactive and participatory learning tools. It is a cultural platform for sharing information and engaging with children and adults alike. Common Knowledge advocates for an increased awareness of our natural environment while promoting the idea that plant knowledge should exist as common knowledge. This project is rooted in “green” philosophies, alternative pedagogies, nutritional activism and the principles of a gift economy. With our ever-increasing interest in alternative and natural healing, Common Knowledge intends to propagate conversations around our ages-old symbiotic relationship with the plant world, which provides us with physical, mental, emotional and spiritual sustenance. Common Knowledge will operate regionally and has started its journey by showcasing plants found in every urban environment in the northeastern US. These species are strong and resilient and actively work to restore nutrients to damaged city soil. They become an example of nature’s endurance and perseverance against great odds. Perhaps they can help guide us to do the same.

All Illustrations and art work were drawn from edible plants found in Brooklyn, NY

Their goals are:

1. To bring knowledge of plants and their stories back into the realm of Common Knowledge.

2. To explore the hidden lives and gifts of some of the most prolific wild plants, which we negatively label as weeds.

3. To develop fun, easy and supportive ways to teach people about plants.

4. To promote biological systems as a crucial component of the production and resources of a thriving city.

5. To generate autonomy and empowerment around mental and physical health with the idea that we are each our own best healers.

Read all about the project here.

 

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