Blog

A selection of our writings from 2009 to the present. If you'd like to keep up to date with our latest posts, please subscribe below.

School of Applied Neopeasantry podcast with Meg Ulman – on mothering, lovering, schooling and eldership

In this podcast, recorded a month ago on her birthday, Meg reflects on the intimate, the big picture, and everything that stitches them together. We hope you enjoy this hour with Meg Ulman, chief executive witch at the School of Applied Neopeasantry.

 

As always we welcome your feedback.

Neoliberalism or neopeasantry? Patrick is guest on Sacred Lab podcast

How do we transition from neoliberalism to something more beautiful, even as the Empire falls apart and takes so much life with it? Here we share an excerpt from Ryan Dickinson’s interview with Patrick on Ryan’s podcast, Sacred Lab.

You can listen to the audio excerpt here:

 

In the podcast, Patrick referred to the film The Babushkas of Chernobyl and the book The Wisdom of Insecurity.

Below is our accompanying drawing to this audio. The dotted line (in this series of drawings) represents transition, movement, or connection to both stories, the old one in the future other, or the integration of both to create a third reality in the very present. The dotted line plays with the oppositional, it acts as a permeable membrane between the so-called “real world” (of university medalists designing nuclear warheads, engineering viruses, sterilising food seeds, or calling heterodox thinkers conspiracy theorists while protecting state-corporate interests from scrutiny), and the imagined – the world we’re longing for, seeding into, and knowing the generational succession and resistance required to rebuild the village, while committing fully to the present moment to make that future possible, even in glorious futility and foolishness.

 

All power to the ones already moving to a more beautiful world our hearts, guts and minds know is possible. Much compassion to those wanting to move but are stuck or caught or entrapped by neoliberalism or something else. Keep wriggling your cuffs!

As always your comments are welcome, they give added spice to this place of story.

Rebuilding the local village with Bei Yin and Jashan Singh (podcast)

Join Patrick as he asks timely questions of Bei Yin and Jashan Singh, two recent guests at our School of Applied Neopeasantry. Bei and Jashan’s stories offer clarity, warmth, honesty and generative responses to the discussion of how we might reclaim the local village.

You can listen to the audio-only version here.

 

And here is the audio with an image version:

Since our time together, we have begun discussions with Bei and Jashan and local farmers, land holders and community actors to see what can be achieved to enable young farmers from diverse backgrounds to grow food and sell it to local markets. We have been active in this space for a number of years matchmaking landless wanna-be neopeasants with people willing to share their land, and sharing our own story of farmless farming based not on private property ownership but rather on social relations. Our local food co-op feeds about 300 households and we could do with some more local growers who are willing to raise crops to directly supply them or to sell at the local Sunday market.

The majority of the world’s food is grown on small farms ranging between 2 and 70 acres. It is a blatant lie we need to use pesticides. It is a myth farmers need to get big. That’s merely the ideology of bankers, chemical companies, and the coalition of the willing found in the agribusiness and government sectors.

Neopeasants arise, take back control of how you grow and who you grow for!

Please feel free to comment or get in touch if Bei and Jashan’s story has inspired you and you would like to be kept in the loop about future farming possibilities. Additionally, if you have land to share and would like to offer younger farmers opportunities to start farming without going into debt please head to Land Share Central Victoria, contact us here, leave a comment, or start your own Land Share page in your region. The future of farming is debt and chemical free. We just need to link people up to begin discussions and collaborations.

What a time of the year to think big, farm small and cut out the banks and the middle men.

With love, Artist as Family

Stories from the School of Applied Neopeasantry (podcast) with Coni, Ilenia and Carla

Please join us as we shell broad beans at the kitchen table and listen to stories about the homeplaces, wisdom and wildness of Carla Gallego, Ilenia Theuriclat and Constanza Hidalgo. Here’s the audio-only version:

 

 

These three women are the latest volunteers to visit Tree Elbow University and join our School of Applied Neopeasantry. It was a wild week of story, laughter, dancing and communing as we lived life richly together honouring earth, our food, more-than-humans and each other. Coni is hacking industrial design with permaculture, Ilenia wants to hack social work with permaculture, and Carla sees the potential of permaculture to reintroduce spirit into the arts.

This podcast series is dedicated to listening to those who have made themselves students of life, of permaculture and of neopeasantry, and are seeking their own learning pathways in diverse and dynamic ways. This podcast is slow media so feel free to create some space for the conversation. Make yourself a cuppa and catch some sunlight, or gently work through the piled up dishes while you listen. These women’s gifts, embedded in their stories, are a slow unfolding.

The week with Coni, Ilenia and Carla was magical and we hope you pick up a little of this spirit in our conversation, the spirit of which flowed into many places around home including the community garden working bee on their final day with us.

Wherever you are in your life right now we hope this hour of story calls to you. Your comments are always welcome and feel free to also tell us where you find your wild man or wild woman, and how you make room for this wildness.

Sending solstice greetings from Tree Elbow to your festive table,
Artist as Family

Stories from the School of Applied Neopeasantry (podcast) with Victoria Battisti

We’ve had the pleasure of spending the week with Victoria Battisti, a young permaculturist from Argentina. Victoria has come to Australia on a pilgrimage to deepen her permaculture knowledges and awareness, and before she left for her next destination she sat down with Patrick to share a little of the story that led her to travel to our School of Applied Neopeasantry here in Djaara peoples’ country.

This podcast is the second in a series (listen to our first with Gregori Papanastasiou here), and is 30 mins in duration. We hope you enjoy this conversation with the effervescent Victoria Battisti.​​

 

As always your comments are most welcome, and if you are interested in being a SWAP (Social Warming Artists and Permaculturists) or a SWAN (Social Warming Artisans and Neopeasants) with us, please read this doc for more info.

Drifting, fudging, dancing, initiation and subsistence with Gregori Papanastasiou

We’ve had the joy of spending this week with Gregori Papanastasiou, and numerous conversations have flowed through the labours of each day. As we’re beginning to take in volunteers again, which we call SWAPs (social warming artists & permaculturists) or SWANs (social warming artisans & neopeasants), we thought we’d share some of the gifts people bring to Tree Elbow and our School of Applied Neopeasantry, exchanging food, labour, fuel, medicine and story.

In this first, long-form podcast offering, we hear Greg’s passage from migrant parents to growing up in suburban Melbourne, his self-directed rites of passage as a youth, to dance, music, meditation and exploring subsistence lifeways in an urban context.

 

The conversation goes for well over an hour, and contains the wisdom, curiosity and direction of a young man seeking meaning and rich life without money. So feel free make some space for it, and let it slowly unfurl. Like much slow media the gold is hidden in the fissures of deep and open listening.

We hope you enjoy this gentle, meandering yarn. What is your rites of passage story as a young person? Where are your nodes of connection to Greg and his story? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Here are the books Greg and Patrick mentioned:
Martín Prechtel’s Long Life Honey in the Heart: A story of Initiation and Eloquence
Vandana Shiva’s Oneness Vs the 1%: Shattering Illusions, Seeking Freedom