Beauty in the Broken

Project by Peter Smith

We are taking a journey into how philosophies of repair, tending and rebuilding can be a mindful practice that helps both individuals and a community heal.

As covid-19 has broken us, we repair in a new, beautiful way. We don’t try to hide these breaks and damage, but we repair our town and community – creating something unique and powerfully beautiful.

The starting ground lies in Japanese philosophies of Wabi Sabi & Kintsui and worked out through the practice of Rock Gardens. Wabi-sabi is succinctly  described as ‘the beauty in imperfections’.

Kintsugi is the repairing of broken things, making them something beautiful in a new way. This is best seen in pottery, where broken shards are reconnected with gold seams making beautiful pieces.

I see this project as a social Kintsugi, worked out through the mindful practice of rock gardens, sometimes called zen gardens.

I am seeking participants to become ‘gardeners’ who will regularly tend a set of sand and rock gardens throughout Dumfries.  This will be a meditative practice, a healing through maintaining, tending, designing and redesigning over a period of a few months.

Rocks or different shaped objects are placed on the field of sand, rakes are used to mark patterns and shapes into the sand, left for the day and a new design created the next day.

For information about Peter, visit our Participants page.

Image taken at 3pm during Atlas Pandemica artists gathering Tuesday 15th September.