Public Foodways Through Collaborative Social Design

APA New Jersey Chapter


Friday, May 5, 2017
2:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. EDT

CM | 1.50

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How can we work across disciplines to build, connect and regenerate interdependence in our food systems? How can cooperative and engaged land stewardship cultivate a profound sense of place? Swale is a garden, a sculpture, and a proposition for a new ecology on New York State public land. Swale Edible Food Forest is a 5,000 square-foot floating park and edible landscape made of perennial polyculture gardens on New York’s waterways. Swale serves as a public artwork and living experiment through collaboration between artists, educators, students, policy makers, landscape architects, water engineers, urban gardeners and public park visitors. We believe that by cultivating perennial plants and providing space for experiential learning, we can devise a plan for long-term stewardship on our public lands. Join us in this hands-on session to explore the role of public and art and sculpture in generating place-based ecological wisdom. Through a series of prompts and exercises, workshop participants collaborate with a team from Swale to devise a holistic plan for involving communities to build strategies for growing food in public spaces.

Workshop participants will play an integral role in crafting and shaping changes to public park and public land management policies regarding use of chemicals, implementation of perennial food plants, and encouraging greater community involvement in decision making processes. We are also interested in forming a working group and discussion series made up of foragers, land stewards, policy makers, educators, gardeners and artists to contribute to this conversation, and collaborate with Swale in 2017.


Eugenia Manwelyan


Mary Mattingly


Contact Info

Leonardo Vazquez,