RAMBLES WITH NATURE KIT – Sheila Ghelani

Stalks of pale grasses against a blue sky
Rambles with Nature Kit - Photo Credit: Becky Edmunds
Stalks of pale grasses against a blue sky
Rambles with Nature Kit – Photo Credit: Becky Edmunds

RAMBLES WITH NATURE KIT was commissioned by Norfolk & Norwich Festival for their 2021 Festival. 

The kit is based on Rambles with Nature, a series of art-works I began making in 2013 which explored the hedgerow from a range of perspectives and angles, with many different collaborators. 

At the invitation of the Festival, I translated the project into a Kit – drawing together some of the tips and tools used over the years, with instructions – so that others might undertake a Ramble with Nature, at their own leisure and on their own terms… 

Each kit (only 100 were made) came carefully presented in a pouch and contained a letter from me, some rambling rules, a notebook and pencil, and 6 tools designed to encourage attentive looking, listening and reflection on nature – including a pocket Claude Glass (aka black mirror). 

The project as a whole was inspired by a book I found in a charity shop called Rambles with Nature Students (1899). In the book the author and naturalist Elizabeth Brightwen invites readers to practice attentiveness – to look and listen carefully whilst out and about… Out of this simple instruction she grew a collection of art-works, which she called rambles.

RAMBLES WITH NATURE KIT — Sheila Ghelani 

Sheila Ghelani is an artist of Indian/English mixed heritage, whose solo and collaborative performances, social art works, installations, texts and videos seek to illuminate and make visible the connections between race, ecology, science, history and the present day.  

Since 1995 her attentive, detailed and care ‘full’ practice has been cross-pollinating ideas, materials, people and places in order to un-settle dominant narratives and make space for those that are (or that which is) in-between, on the edge, in the middle, at the border.