Ecology is the starting point of my research and the cornerstone of my work as an artist~facilitator.
I experiment with nature-culture practices and narratives to reflect on our interconnectedness with all of life.
This can take the form of sound and voice works, artist books, spatial interventions and performative experiences, artist residencies, workshops or one-on-one support for individuals and organisations. I enjoy creating gestures or offerings that provide time and space for people to reflect, connect with, (re)create, celebrate, (re)value, harmonise or simply observe our place in the world.

CURRENT PROJECTS

Estudio Nuboso’s Suelo Methodology & forthcoming Field Guide

SUELO is a methodology designed to reconnect with the places we inhabit, through the concept, metaphor and materiality of soil as sustenance, home, land and territory. It seeks to rearticulate the natural and cultural value of a selected place, create networks of collaborative solidarity, and promote regenerative practices of collective co-creation for a better present and future.

I started writing it in 2020, after the HKW Anthropocene Curriculum invited me to share a case study about my work with Estudio Nuboso for the program – The Shape of a Practice. I chose to write about SUELO, for its capacity to connect deeply with places, their inhabitants, and the value of soil in a post-covid world. You can get a feeling for the vision for SUELO in my text Soil as Meeting Point that I wrote for Fundación Mar Adentro and their book and exhibition in Chile, “Expanded Nature: Making the Invisible Visible.”

Forces

Forces is a compilation of nine songs written and collected between 2012 and 2022. The album addresses the forces that rule our lives; our connection to nature and also the obstacles that seem to get in the way of us having more harmonious relationships with each other and our environment. The songs speak to decisive moments: when a calling received a response, when a wave was caught, when an image was captured. Forces was recorded at home in Berlin, with field recordings gathered in Panama and Europe.

Conceived as an artwork, Forces comes with analog photographs that were taken in the same 10-year period. I’ve produced a handbound, signed, limited edition book of 100 copies with the images and lyrics, as well as a limited edition tape version, released in Spore Initiative, Berlin with the DIY label Rehberge Records. Get in touch about the tape and/or book. Co–produced with Estudio Nuboso, part of the proceeds go towards the care of a very special piece of cloud forest in Panama – El Jilguero Reserve.

Una Calle de Árboles, un Corredor de Vida

A children’s book I wrote for and about the mission of the reforestation and community project Pro Eco Azuero, in Panama. Illustrated by Loes Roos, produced by Rosamond Pope Meyer and designed by Lorena Carrasco.

The book tells the story of a girl who encounters a baby monkey and their family, and the difficulties they face when forest connectivity is broken. In Panama and in this particular region, cattle farming is characteristic of the culture. But this young girl and her cousin are moved to help the monkeys to move more freely in their environment. They learn that in order to do that, they have to grow a street of trees – a biological corridor. They start in the fourth grade and by the time they graduate from university, the forest has grown and spread, as well as a culture of care and regeneration. This timeline is a graspable period of our lives which, I hope, will convey to my readers that we can make a difference in the world and see the effects of right relationship in our lifetime.

In Our Hands

This is a series of images of 24 selected mudras (hand yoga positions), placed upon vulnerable landscapes. It is conceived as a toolkit to help us care for and connect with more ease to our selves, others and nature. Through them I propose to build a bridge between our state of being and that of the planet.

You can purchase the box-set of cards (format A6) from me, Zabriskie Bookshop and also the Walther König bookshop in the Gropius Bau Museum in Berlin. The e-book version is also available in English and Spanish – please write me directly: connect@elaspalding.com to order it.

This will be the last self-published run of cardsets. I am, however, open to collaborations with a publishing house. Get in touch if you are interested!