Bringing seasons and festivals into our working life through crafts
The Lantern Seasonal Studio Practitioners and Performers endeavor to bring a healing rhythm to the year with a variety of activities, which follow nature and the four seasons. They utilise the products of nature’s various seasons and incorporate these into its products. Hence, a direct link is made, supporting an experience of each different season and additionally, a link to the Festivals of the year.
Taking inspiration and materials from our natural environment, the Seasonal Practitioners hand-craft a variety of decorative pieces such as, wooden ‘Bird Brollies’ and ‘Hot Place Mats,’ paper ‘Origami Flowers,’ organic wool and cotton ‘Charlie Scarfs’ and a variety of ‘Seasonal Decorations’ made using willow harvested from The Lantern Community Land and using wool from sheep reared in Wales. During the summertime, the Seasonal Practitioners grow, harvest and process herbs and flowers for hand-made cosmetics and herbal teas. They also work outdoors on site-specific interventions and sculptural artworks for The Lantern Community estate.
One of the Seasonal Practitioners signature projects is ‘Nests.’ Inspired by the abandoned bird nests found within the grounds of The Lantern Community, the Seasonal Practitioners made a sculptural installation consisting of a number of willow nests, ranging in size from hand-size to life-size. Some of the nests have been permanently installed; others are available to purchase.
All products made within the studio are for sale in The Lantern Centre Shop all year round. In August at the ‘Open Hampshire Studio’ and in November at the ‘Winter Fayre and Exhibition’ the workshop is open for the public to view and purchase work.
The Seasonal Practitioners welcome opportunities which allow them to present their work outside The Lantern Community. Over the past three years, they have exhibited at Ringwood Library, The Link Gallery in Winchester and at The University of Winchester.
Through performance, the Seasonal Performers aim to bring the seasons and the many festivals celebrated at The Lantern Community into our lives in a deeper and more conceptual way. The Seasonal Performers are passionate about expression through dance and movement and aspire to cultivate profound experiences for audiences and participants. The Seasonal Performers challenge society’s perception of dance and the stigmas around (dis)ability. Through their work, they promote inclusiveness, artistic expression and exploration between people regardless of their abilities, economic status, age, religion or race.
Through the use of symbolic choreography, the Seasonal Performers produced ‘Blossom Dance’: a performance piece welcoming in the spring months. The piece was accompanied by the traditional Czech song, ‘Open Little Blossom Bud.’ The song was sung in three different languages: Czech, English and German.
For Whitsun Festival, the Seasonal Performers created ‘Dove Dance.’ The performers worked collaboratively, each contributing their own approaches and talents towards the final choreographed dance. The dance was inspired by ‘Japanese Butoh Atsushi Takenoushi’ - a slow and expressive form of movement. The performance was accompanied by improvised live music, performed by musicians from outside of The Lantern Community.
The Seasonal Performers were part of a celebratory concert at The Winchester Cathedral to welcome the new Dean of Winchester Cathedral, Reverend Catherine Ogle. Hosted by the University of Winchester and Foundation Music, the concert featured music from around the county including folk tunes and tales. Many performers gathered together, with a collaborative, feature-length piece by The Reverend Professor June Boyce-Tillman MBE forming the second half of the evening. The music was performed by musicians from the University of Winchester, City of Southampton Orchestra, six Hampshire schools, community choirs from across the county and The Lantern Seasonal Performers.
For another spring production, the Seasonal Performers created ‘New Life.’ The production was orchestrated for members of The Lantern Community and The Ringwood Waldorf School. The piece tells the story of new life through movement, music and poetry, influenced by anthroposophy, ‘Contact Improvisation’ and ‘Butoh’ Dance techniques.