Written by Ania Szneps on 22.09.16

Have you ever gone into a gallery or museum and felt confused about the pieces or just out of place? Laurence Weyand, an art student herself, who will be working on her Master’s in Fibers and Material Practices at Concordia University this September, understands and wants to help break down that invisible wall between those who “get” art and those who, well, don’t.

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But she’s not stopping there: Weyand hopes to bring an inclusive feel to the art world while marrying it with an environmentally conscious aspect. How, you may ask? By taking a map of Montreal, specifically around Mile Ex and the Plateau area, and outlining the shape of a plant which will have a plant placed on many specific points – so there will be plants planted on the plant map. She hopes to accomplish this with the help of others as they participate in a project that is creative and ecological.

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“I’m super into sustainability, upcycling, recycling, and as artists it’s incredible how many people use materials that are wasteful or harmful to the environment,” said Weyand. “So I always try to do art projects that are and giving back to the land in a way”.

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Stemming from a concept for a class of Weyand’s, the project’s start was not without its initial hiccups.

For starters, many of the people assigned plants had been unable to care for the plants – which were distributed during the winter – until the summertime. Next was the fact that the beginning of our summer season was much more of a sad spring than anything else.

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However, these proved to be blessings in disguise because it gave Weyand the opportunity to research plants a bit further and pick some that were indigenous to Canada (this, after being warned by a botanically-inclined friend that it was an important detail to keep in mind). After starting with mung beans, Weyand realized “I should really be careful introducing foreign plants to the environment,” and has since changed her choice of seed to tomatoes and sunflower seeds, both from Quebec.

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As for the communal aspect, Weyand explains “I really like sharing and giving to others in the name of art.”

As of now, the project is still underway and Weyand is looking to get as many people implicated as she can. If you’re in the area and are interested to be part of this eco-art movement, you can contact Weyand at her email: drawaplantwithplants@gmail.com.

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As for what she hopes others will take away from her idea, she says “I’d really like people to plant something as a community and in the name of art, which is something really cool and it gives the project a whole new dimension and allows for a lot of interesting discussion around it.”

Photos by Laurence Weyand.

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