GROW LOVE Interactive Installation at the Parthenon in Centennial Park, Nashville June 16-18

GROW LOVE is an interactive, site specific, public art installation by Tracy Ginsberg and Theodore Lillie. An homage to the iconic, native Tennessee flower and Parthenon building, the installation is an immersive, three-dimensional Magnolia flower labyrinth spanning the width of the mall. The large-scale temporary work invites people to explore the art, walk through the labyrinth and experience Centennial Park in an innovative and unique exchange.

Participants enter the labyrinth and meander through its scalloped petal paths, with fabric walls ranging 2-5 feet high allowing walkers to see one another, the installation and the site simultaneously. The fabric paths are symbolic of the draped Athena figures in the Parthenon archeological site. When arriving in the labyrinth’s communal center, participants have the option to add to the art by hanging a GROW LOVE tag with a personal handwritten message. A table near the installation will supply tags, pens, information and guidelines for walking the labyrinth.

At dusk and through the evening, video projections emerge on the installation and walkers, enhancing site-specific aspects of the art and park with light, color, movement and shadow. Projections include video of magnolia flowers blooming, Greek archeological sites and labyrinths. Video projections envelop the labyrinth structure and are viewable from within the park and surrounding areas.

GROW LOVE is a Forest Alchemy Production by Tracy Ginsberg and Theodore Lillie of the San Francisco Bay Area. Their interdisciplinary approach combines installation, sculpture, video/photography, painting/drawing, sound and performance to explore transformation, sacred space, nature and the feminine divine. GROW LOVE is sponsored in part by Metro Arts Thrive Grant and is also a launch project for Artville, a Nashville based temporary art program spearheaded by Samantha Saturn of the American Artisan Festival. Intended to inspire community participation with art and public sites, Artville aims to expand notions of art and civic interaction and to reimagine how temporary art enlivens and positively impact residents of the city.

To support GROW LOVE please visit https://www.ifundwomen.com/projects/grow-love

GROW LOVE Story
For many years, I dreamed of building a labyrinth. My first experience was in Northern CA with Samantha Saturn and walking this labyrinth barefoot in the sunshine planted a seed in me. I spent the next two decades exploring connections between art, nature, sacred space and spiritual practice. Over the years, regularly walking the labyrinth became a meaningful, intuitive, practical ritual that awakened a vital force inside. I continued visiting and studying different labyrinths around the world and began to visualize unique designs. These visions gestated and developed over time and then suddenly GROW LOVE was born!

In 2015, a clear image of a giant flower labyrinth in a Nashville field presented itself. The vision was inspired by Nancy Saturn and the Flower of Life Mandala. Surprised by the “download,” I called Samantha immediately. Equally surprised, she said she was resurrecting the American Artisan Festival and that their site was the Parthenon at Centennial Park… it was Kismet. Labyrinths are found at the entrance of ancient sites around the world and Nancy’s favorite flower was a Magnolia, which has nine petals just like a traditional Nine Circuit Cretan Labyrinth.

The project was underway. Theodore and I began the work of figuring out a modular structure that we could transport to Nashville. We poured concrete molds, made drawings, built the structure, sewed slip covers, dyed tags, shot time-lapse footage of Magnolia flowers blooming and put all the love we have into this labyrinth installation. GROW LOVE embodies the intersection of site-specific interactive art, natural public environments and spiritual practice. We are honored to share this work with you. Our intention is to create a communal space to recharge energy, reflect compassion, align with nature and empower the human heart and spirit to spread light and grow love.

Information and Guidelines for Walking GROW LOVE
Known as sacred portals accessible to everyone, labyrinths tap into our intuition and creative intelligence. The history and act of walking a labyrinth spans millennia and the ancient practice has become a meaningful tool in contemporary life. Labyrinths offer profound, archetypal experiences powerfully connected to spirit and imagination. It’s a tool for release, regeneration, joy, self-discovery, spiritual epiphanies, balance, alignment, meditation, prayer and the mystical tradition of receiving hidden inner wisdom. More powerful with community, a labyrinth transforms people into pilgrims and offers a sense of unity in manifesting sacred communal space.

GROW LOVE is a site-specific labyrinth, inspired by the Flower of Life Mandala, the Cretan Nine Circuit Labyrinth, the nine-petal magnolia flower, the Parthenon and the artistic endeavors of Nancy Saturn. We encourage participants to freely experience the labyrinth in their own unique way. We hope this act will inspire future walks with new openness for the possibility of growth. For maximum benefit and enjoyment, we recommend walking barefoot, referred to as “Earthing.” The benefits of Earthing are many including anti-inflammatory, lowering blood pressure and cortisol, improving circulation, releasing endorphins, etc.

Before walking, take a few deep breaths. Feel your feet on the ground and the air around you. Set your intention to “grow love” or simply walk and see what arises. Be open, be receptive, stop thinking, just walk… there’s only one path, you can’t get lost, it takes about 5 minutes or longer, if you want to linger in a petal. There are little nooks along the path where walkers can stop and rest. Let go, enjoy and GROW LOVE.

GROW LOVE tags are an optional, additional way to participate. Select a tag and write down your intention, prayer, vision, blessing, a drawing, quote, any way you imagine growing love. The tags represent seeds we plant for our highest intentions for our collective future. Hold the tag in your hand or put it in your pocket until you reach the center… hold the intention in your heart as you walk through the labyrinth. When you reach the center, add your tag to the others and send love their way. Feel the expansion of compassion and the collective power of our interconnected visions. Take a deep breath and begin the walk out of the labyrinth. Breathe, feel the sun on your face, the earth under your feet and the beat of your heart. GROW LOVE.