Color Of Soil and Season

An art-making workshop where participants discover the importance of the billions of individual living beings in the soil as we slowly delicately, and mindfully explore the myriad colors and life to be found in soil, stone, and other local natural elements.

Images from some of our 'Color of Seasons and Soils' community workshops
Images from some of our ‘Color of Seasons and Soils’ community workshops

Project Overview

In each square foot of soil, there are billions of individual living beings. These microbial lives, bug lives, and plant lives work in relative symbiosis together towards mutual growth; along the way they help give color both to the soil and to the plants that grow within it.

This all-ages workshop has us slowly, delicately, and mindfully explore the colors and life in the soil. We enter into a new kind of relationship with soil and plants, asking what sorts of life and color the soil holds and what kinds of stories it can tell. Participants carefully and mindfully find answers to these questions as they use soil and plant materials to produce color.

This workshop offers a very eye-opening experience for participants. We consistently hear how the array of color and feeling that can be found within nature — even in urban areas — is beyond what anyone in the workshops thinks is possible.

Reviews and Reactions

“I always thought of plants and flowers as beautiful, but now I realize for the first time how beautiful the soil is too!”
– Mayu / Osaka, Japan

“I am so inspired by working with the soil and plants this way … I am building my thesis project around it.”
– Pattarapol / Design Student, Thailand

Project Team and Partners

Developed by Patrick Lydon and Suhee Kang.

Produced in part by a grant from Chishima Foundation for Creative Osaka with additional support from Co.To.Hanna / Minna Nouen, Lateral Lab, Professor Isao Suizu at Aichi University of the Arts, and Air Osaka Hostel

Project coordinators include Ikumasa Hayashi, Yasutaka Kaneda, Emi Ogata, and Kaori Tsuji in Japan, and Blooming School and Value Garden in Korea

Inspired by ancient Native American natural painting, and modern day plant-paint artist Shujiro Murayama.