Dundee Urban Orchard

Growing in a greenspace near you

Art and ecology

Drawing on the work of Joseph Beuys and other socially engaged and ecological art practitioners, Dundee Urban Orchard (DUO) is a contemporary art and performance project that integrates the planting of orchards into a city-wide social and ecological artwork.

Apple Usherette - Dundee Flower and Food Festival

Apple Usherette – Dundee Flower and Food Festival

Responding to the challenge of the industrial food system, DUO explores the generative power of orchards to highlight issues relating to biodiversity and cultural diversity. Vandana Shiva’s definition of biodiversity and her call for creative action speaks volumes for our work.

Biodiversity means the diversity of life – the rich diversity of life forms on our beautiful planet. Biodiversity is the very fabric of life – it provides the conditions for life’s emergence and maintenance, and the many different ways in which that life is expressed. Biological diversity and cultural diversity are intimately related and interdependent. Biodiversity is in fact the embodiment of centuries of cultural evolution, because humans have co-evolved with other species in the diverse ecosystems of the world. Biodiversity in its turn has shaped the world’s diverse cultures. The erosion of biodiversity and the erosion of cultural diversity are related. Both have been threatened by the globalization of an industrial culture based on reductionist knowledge, mechanistic technologies and the commodification of resources. 

Responding to this challenge, DUO work with individuals, community groups and cultural organisations to reimagine Dundee as an Orchard City. We ask, What would Dundee look like, feel like, sound like, taste like, and smell like if it was an Orchard City? And what could we learn from orchards as a model for sustainable urban development?

Print workshop with Hot Chocolate youth group, part of Blue Skies Festival

Print workshop with Hot Chocolate youth group, part of Blue Skies Festival