In The Spotlight - We Are Woven: Stacey Keay
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My project was woven from many threads. From charity work in the city, to life with a tribe in the jungle, to then finally finding sanctuary in South Wales and creating a space filled with dreams.
I have been a community facilitator for eight years, working mostly for grassroots projects in supporting our society’s most vulnerable voices.
I have been inspired by humble local heroes and had the honour of hearing life stories from all around the world.
These moments have deeply moved me and opened the gates to a heart-centred path that has fulfilled me in every way ever since.
The most inspiring of all of these experiences was co-ordinating a studio space for homeless artists in Brighton. I was given the freedom to design activities that could shake belief systems within a very complex and often painful world.
The courage, commitment and community spirit I felt in that room every time they chose to show up, inspires me still.
I witnessed transformations, powerful realisations and watched as they shaped a new love for life. I began to believe in art as medicine and creative expression as the sauce of our soul.
This is the place where I started weaving nature into my practices. The impact of adding an ecological factor only intensified the feeling of connectedness and became such a gentle way of communicating with our inner-landscapes.
I decided to take a few months break, to really delve into the depths of all that I was developing and chose North East India, for its natural wonders and traditional tribes.
I was seeking a place to bring my theories into being and what I discovered was the most sincere sense of belonging with the people of Meghalaya.
As the world went into lockdown, I was six thousand miles from home in a remote village, learning to fish and singing gospel songs along an emerald river.
In a time of crisis and confusion, the Khasi tribe became my home and the jungle called my project into creation.
In Megahalaya they have ‘living bridges’, made by generations of families wrapping roots of trees together across the jungle. They were breathtaking and represented a devotion that resonated right to my core.
We are all so interconnected with our environment and have very own ecosystems living within, yet in a world so fast and ever changing, who would take the time to braid the earth beneath us?
After returning to the UK, I spent the rest of the lockdown in my mum's garden.
Knowing that once restrictions were lifted, I would need to find a place to grow my ideas, I decided to build a campervan.
Once we were given the green light to travel post-lockdown, I headed straight for Wales, where somehow I knew I’d find my spot.
It was this summer on the road where I truly discovered the language of flowers and made my prayers to the land. I started listening more closely to my own rhythms, began to embody the practices I loved, and found peace in my own transformative cycles.
I also found the Gower Peninsula… And then the Heritage Centre… And then the abandoned greenhouse which sang to me from across the leat.
I spent the next half a year restoring what I believed could be magical, and as of April 2022 my project was born.
I would really like to thank the Gower Heritage Centre in Parkmill for supporting me in this dream, and the wonderful network of Gower makers, bakers, growers and shakers who have been a beacon for me on this journey.
We Are Woven is a botanical studio for earth-centred workshops.
- It is a return to simplicity - an invitation to slow down and unfurl the wild within.
- It is the embodiment of creativity, our deeper dimensions and guardianship of our home.
I deliver sessions in art techniques connecting with organic matter and offer collective experiences, such as land art, foraging days and classes experimenting with natural dyes.
You can also book more personalised tutorials for small groups or special occasions.
The space is full of light and plant life, with every leaf, petal, rock and mineral just waiting to be heard.
If you’d like to get in touch or follow my journey then please click below:
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