grant to plant : $3333.33 Plant Give Away

Natural Gardener
Performance, November 7th from 9a-6p


Many residents of District 8 often speak of the as a place where "stones grow from the Earth." Building on the idea of using stone sourced directly from the area, artists Patrick Bresnan and Ivete Lucas proposed building a series of free stone mailboxes across the district on private property. The project was based on the statistics that District 8 has the highest percentage of homeowners. A prototype of the stone mailbox was made for the Benitez family and then used to promote the idea across the district.  

The artist team created over 300 fliers and took their stone mailbox proposal door-t0-door, church-to-church, and neighborhood-to-neighborhood.  After many conversations and meetings with neighborhood associations, and area businesses, the team met their dream client at the iconic Austin nursery, The Natural Gardener. Nursery owner John Dromgoole and his staff spent a great deal of time working on a mailbox design with the artists team.  After their third meeting Bresnan and Lucas decide to focus their project on a collaboration with The Natural Gardener where they gave residents from District 8 free plants using 1/3 of their grant budget, or $3333.33, to make the purchase.

At the Plant Give Away event, the artists asked people to mark on a district map where they lived and to write a note to Council Member Ellen Troxclair. The artists also interacted with people receiving the plants as a news crew. Award winning Austin actress and director Alexis Scott performed as the news anchor. Brief recorded interviews with residents covered topics such as the state of the natural environment, property taxes, crime and the school system.

Special thanks to John Dromgoole and the Natural Gardener, Hannah Kenah and Jacob Branson

Artists: Patrick Bresnan & Ivete Lucas

Patrick Bresnan and Ivete Lucas employ documentary photography, filmmaking and installation to explore encounters with niche segments of society. Their diverse film projects have received grants from the Mexican National Fund for Culture and the Arts, the Teresa Lozano Long Center, the AIA, and the Austin Film Society. Their photography and installation work have been displayed nationally in galleries and museums, including the UT Visual Art Center and Fotofest’s Talent in Texas curated by Toby Kamps and Michelle White of the Menil Collection.  


Council Member: Ellen Troxclair

Otis Ike & Ivete Lucas photo credit Lauren Reynolds