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Fab Feminist Magazine

Studio Update: Feminist Apothecary and Other Witchery

Studio Update: Feminist Apothecary and Other Witchery

by Callie Garp

October 29, 2016

Wow. It's been quite some time since I have written and actually published one of these. A studio update. These used to be a basic part of practice from the earliest days of this platform, right up through the first semester of my final year of Graduate School. Then, as the existential dread and self-loathing of art school (aka "thesis") set in, I didn't really have time or the wherewithal to keep up with it. However, after writing my most recent piece "It's Hard Out There For A Bitch," I realized that I kinda, sorta really miss writing about making things. So, I'm going to start doing that, probably more often. It's going to be a mix of things: pictures of my work space, documentation of the creative things I've been up to, short narratives on working as an editor on Fab Fem Mag, some thoughts on theory, some doodles and some cat pictures. Probably lots of cat pictures.

So, for this studio update I wanted to write about a fun thing I did a week ago or so: I made aromatherapy bath salts.

So, I really like herbs. I like growing them, I like cooking with them and I like using them in my daily care in the form of tea, lotion (IE my homemade super amazing lotion bar), and a host of other body care products. I grew up kind of obsessed with herbs - herbology, herb lore, herbal medicine, sacred herbs... These all appealed to me in ways that I suspect replaced the role of religion or spirituality.

I woke up early one Sunday morning and the sun was literally streaming through my dining room window. I was giddy. I got to play with flowers and herbs and yay!

A post shared by Callie Garp (@fabfeministart) on


I have written about my interest in herbs and plants before ... A NOD TO OLD TRADITIONS: HERBOLOGY AND HERBLORE AT ENGAGE SPACE FARM My love of growing things and understanding plants and our relationship with plants is part of the reason all of my designs are so overwhelmingly floral. The other part is that I love flowers. So all the way around I'm pretty much into anything flora.


For the rest of this lil' studio update, I'm going to inundate you with beautiful process photos and leave you with some questions I've been quietly pondering over.


Some questions I wanted to leave you with:

  • What do you think are the lines between craft and art?
  • If utility plays a role in determining that line, how does the surge of social practice in contemporary art interrupt that understanding?
  • What responsibilities do makers who explore traditions like medicinal and soothing herbs, or natural dying practices etc etc have to the cultures that produced those traditions in the first place?
  • How does eco feminism fit into this discussion?



Link Love:

Founder/Director Callie Garp has a Masters of Fine Arts degree from  Tufts University. Keep up with Callie here.



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