the good nature
people & the planet
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Leslie Bish

field trip:

surfing in the rockaways with leslie bish

Respect for the earth, love for the body, #partyplasticfree - leslie bish

new york.

Leslie Bish illustrates ladies, makes friends with plants and knows movement is one of the best ways to get back you. After a salty surf, we hung out on towels and talked about stripping away the excess and the power of plants. 

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I have been trying to make sense of my numerous passions, impulses and motivations for years. What do I make of this desire to connect with plants, move my body and illustrate the human form?

These three components felt totally unrelated for a long time. And then herbalism came into the picture. I realized all of these practices stem from a great curiosity for the organisms that we are, and the need to return to a more authentic, lived experience in general. We are so disconnected from the earth. My personal passion around herbs, in moving and illustrating form comes from wanting myself and the people around me to understand and return to themselves in some way.

 
 
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We need the earth. We keep trying to become these self sufficient units outside of the very thing that keeps us alive. Herbalism was a wake up call.

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I want to know what it looks like when we tease out everything that makes us human. I just have a raging curiosity about how we are all connected.

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Herbalism, Movement and Illustrating. They all take turns speaking to me. Someone told me recently - think of any interest you have as a door. For the past few years I’ve been trying to walk through every single door at the same time. She said to me "listen, you have these doors. Some of them are ajar, some of them you don’t have the key to open yet, and some of them are wide open. They’re not going anywhere. They’re always going to be here."

So, I’m just trying to follow whatever door is calling me at any given time.

At the end of the day, I think all of these outlets are driven by one curiosity - I want to know what it looks like when we tease out everything that makes us human. I just have a raging curiosity about how we are all connected, fundamentally. What does it feel like when we are deeply to connected to the earth? I really do think it’s like returning home when you come back to your body, when you come back to the earth. My art is a fascination with this experience and form on a whole different level.

 
 
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listen, you have these doors. Some of them are ajar, some of them you don’t have the key to open yet, and some of them are wide open. They’re not going anywhere. They’re always going to be here

Self Portrait, Leslie Bish. 2018.

Self Portrait, Leslie Bish. 2018.

 
 

When I moved to New York, I was so uprooted from the sense of wholeness that nature gave me as a child. I took an immersive natural medicine course with an amazing herbalist, Peeka Tremble. That re-introduced me to the natural world that  I knew when I was little. It re-forged that friendship.

As humans trying to control everything we think the world is working for or against us. Learning about herbalism cracked that open. This isn’t about me and how I feel. Whatever I deem as good or bad, right and wrong is going to change all the time. It’s about being part of a larger system.

Before I felt so independent, I respected nature as the other. Now I realize we are truly in a symbiotic relationship. We need the earth. We keep trying to become these self sufficient units outside of the very thing that keeps us alive. Herbalism was a wake up call. It’s about switching into this mindset of noticing a plant. Noticing it’s qualities and how it grows. It’s shifted my awareness of the whole world. Plants have shown me the beauty in subtleties.

 
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This isn’t about me and how I feel. Whatever I deem as good or bad, right and wrong is going to change all the time. It’s about being part of a larger system.

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follow Leslie @leslie_bish_

for the art: @yungfussy

for the movement: www.symbiosislevelup.com