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A semi-permanent installation within the Artsadmin Canteen

an image of a person within forrest. They are facing away from the camera and wearing a pair of headphones. They are surrounded with plants and moss and are lit by a warm pink light, hanging on the wall in front of them.
Image by Daisy Mason

Forrest was a unique partnership between multiple species, an opportunity for collaboration, and an invitation for you to be part of something special.  

Part of biome: experiments in radical kinship, a year-long residency programme in the Artsadmin Canteen from artist, writer, and human ecologist Zoë Laureen Palmer

This tiny urban biome within the Artsadmin Canteen provided a sanctuary for rest and regeneration and acted as an experiment in how we might give and receive mutual care with the more than human living world. forrest was populated by a diverse range of plants, mosses, micro-organisms and seeds and welcomed visitors to find peace and tranquillity within its embrace, guided by a soundtrack from artist Keir vine.

forrest invited us to explore our entanglement with mosses and plants, whose ancestors have inhabited the earth for over 145 million years. The ancient cyanobacteria Spriulina rested within forrest whilst its nutrients were cycled back into its ever-evolving eco system of over 40 known plant and moss species, 60 individual plants and thousands of unknowns. Visitors to forrest contributed to its diverse ecosystem through misting these plants and mosses.

With the exception of lilies and orchids salvaged from the discounted dying houseplant racks in a major retail space, the plants, mosses and algae in the forrest were all gifted, pruned or propagated by Zoë to highlight the way in which plants continue to lie at the heart of the unsustainable movement and commodification of living species across the globe. 

In times of ecosystem collapse and unprecedented biodiversity loss, forrest asked what more will it take for us to afford rest and regeneration to the dying living world of which we are all a part.

Forrest visions is a sonic meditation exploring the entanglement of grief, loss, enchantment and transformation in relationship with our living, dying world. Visitors to forrest were encouraged to experience this piece whilst resting within the space.

  • Daily care – Artsadmin and Caffe Genco
  • Horticultural Consultant – Will Gould
  • Sound Artist – Keir Vine
  • Design Assistant – Georgina E. Mackenzie
  • Art Technician – Dave Ashby
  • Concept/Design – Zoë Laureen Palmer
  • The Artsadmin Canteen is accessible to wheelchair users and welcome guide, hearing, emotional support and assistance dogs.
  • there are wheelchair accessible toilets. Read more about Accessibility at Toynbee Studios.
  • All toilets at Toynbee Studios are gender neutral.
  • There is outdoor and distanced indoor seating.
  • A relaxed performance kit with yoga mats, blankets, cushions and ear defenders is available.

Please email or call 020 7247 5102 if you have any further access requests.

Date and time

17 October – 11 December 2023
11am, 12pm, 1pm bookable slots, Monday - Friday

Please note
This is now a past event.


Toynbee Studios
28 Commercial Street
London, E1 6AB
Tel: 020 7247 5102
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