Down to Earth: Jameel Arts Centre’s annual festival celebrated ecology and the environment

    28 Nov 2021

    Now in its second year, Down to Earth, a festival around ecology and sustainability, returned to Jameel Arts Centre from November 26. Free and open to the public, the event took place from November 26 to 27, the National News states.

    The two-day event included workshops, demonstrations and information stalls for children and adults on topics such as seed-sowing, composting, mini garden arranging, upcycling crafts and living sustainably.

    On November 26, a sowing workshop, led by father-daughter duo Jamie Carroll and Amirah Carroll, let visitors learn about vegetable gardening and discovered specific techniques developed by Jamie for the UAE climate. Visitors were able to receive newly sown seeds.

    There will be a demonstration on aquascaping by Discus.ae, who will showcase the growth of plants in an aquarium setting. The group will also teach visitors how to design a desktop terrarium.

    For those into recycling and crafts, Abdulrahman Bucheeri will teach participants how to transform plastic bags into new creations through a plastic yarn crochet workshop. This is ideal for those aged 12 and above.

    The second day, November 27, included workshops on observational sketching, and creating your own smudge stick by mixing sage, rosemary, lavender and roses.

    A workshop by Tashkeel alum Reem Al Bastaki showed participants how to make flour and salt clay and make impressions with organic materials such as flowers, leaves, oysters and rocks.

    During the weekend, a pop-up market called Green Bazaar for indoor and outdoor plants will bring together local businesses to present eco-conscious and sustainable products in time for the holiday season.

    For more hands-on demonstrations, the Grow and Tell Zone was available for those who want to learn about gardening, composting and beekeeping.

    Meanwhile, those looking to get rid of a few items could look to Faire Trade, a pop-up barter shop that allows visitors to bring pre-loved items to trade in.

    A series of discussions titled The Small Talk, organised in collaboration with Soma Mater, a collective concerned with food futures, presented regional specialists who will explore issues of food, policy and impactful living.

    Refreshments from Here-O, Salad Jar, Teible, The Ice Cream Shop and Veghana will be served on site. Visitors can also step into the Jameel Arts Centre to see their current exhibitions.

    Down to Earth is free and open to the public, and visitors can book their two-hour slot to visit the space on the Jameel Arts Centre website.

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