Ever:land at Night is a rare opportunity to experience the natural world, as part of a small group, as darkness falls on the grounds of University of Kent.
Meeting at the Gulbenkian Arts Centre at twilight, the group will be led to a secret location, discovering together the wild edges and ecologies of their surroundings. The work invites participants to take ownership of the land, to experience it as a commons, a land for everyone – an ‘ever-land’.
This shared immersive experience will offer a way to tune into nature away from screen time and urban demands, spending time outside in the spirit of shinrin-yoku. This Japanese practice, translated as ‘forest bathing’, was developed in the 1980s as a response to mass urbanisation and disconnection from the land, and involves spending time in forests, taking in the atmosphere, to improve health and wellbeing.
Participants will immerse themselves in the woodland and fringes of the university campus, where they will be invited to share personal experiences of their relationship to the natural world and to being out after dark. Ever:land at Night also draws on the rich history of the Reclaim the Night movement, in which women march together at night to protest against acts of violence against women and to demand a world in which women can feel safe going out at night.
The group will be encouraged to test the edges of its comfort zone, to notice what feels safe and what doesn’t, by walking out into the landscape at night together.
Ever:land at Night is a project by Richard Layzell and is part of a series of night walks and performative research in the natural world. From 26-28 October Richard will be onsite at University of Kent with maverick ecologist Kino Paxton, unearthing the deep ecology found in the campus fringes and at Canterbury’s town wall.
Ever:land at Night will be led by artist and curator Emma Leach and is exclusively for people who identify as female or non-binary. Participants should dress for the weather.
Gulbenkian Arts Centre, University of Kent, 6pm
26-28th October, 2022