• Kirsten Holmes

A Dusty Pottering Soul


Hello and welcome to h e r e . Art Therapy.


It has been a while in the pipeline but an inevitable event nonetheless. Through many ups and downs, I have moved house, absolutely not to a situation I was ever expecting, but it has once again opened my eyes to the world of serendipitous events.


I was adamant that I wanted to continue living alone, that my days of sharing a house were well and truly over. I tried to buy a house and it fell through. The clock ticking on the expiration of my rental contract tested my grips on inner calm and that belief that I have that the world has in store for you just what you need, but not always what you can visualise at the time. I wanted, no, I needed a garden for my sanity. I feel both calm and joyful when surrounded by plants. The one bed rentals I looked up were either gone as soon as they were advertised or they were gardenless. Anyway, on a whim, I checked spareroom.com thinking, what’s the point in this? I ain’t sharing! …..And then on the very first ad that I saw were the words “orchard”. I called up, went to view the property, didn’t even see inside the house before my heart breathed with the sight of the orchard, wilderness, trees, space.


The house was massive, dilapidated, dirty, quirky, bursting with potential, and in need of a LOT of TLC. I balked at the state of the kitchen and almost scarpered. Then the landlord showed me the outhouse. Or Pandora’s Box of Mysteries as I have come to call it. The first thing I saw was a giant kiln. I grew up with a pottery in the family. My mother has a pottery. I started to ask a few questions and the landlord started telling me about having inherited the house from a couple who were Artists and Art Therapists. I looked up and saw ivy obscured railings to an upstairs room and asked about that. We went and had a look and it was filled with dusty pottery, artwork and embers of creativity.


I went home feeling very odd indeed. This was not at all what I had ever even begun to imagine as a potential new home. Sharing again? Really? But the dusty kiln and former Art Therapy foundations of this house lingered and fastened to my thoughts


When I was still living in Paris, I did a vision booklet project with an Art Therapy group, picturing what you want to welcome into your life. I drew metal railings up to an upstairs room envisioning an Art Therapy space in my future home. Those railings I saw today triggered that image in my mind. I felt like there was something very different about this house and that the soul of the place was waiting to be nurtured again. It was a very odd feeling indeed and something that I couldn’t let go of despite the grimness of the kitchen!


After some reflection, I moved in. I have done a lot of cleaning and gardening. But what is most exciting of all is that I have made an Art Therapy space right here and I look forward to welcoming clients from Monday 21 June.


I have also just been over to ask the neighbours for a sprig of rosemary for my roast potatoes (the kitchen is safe to cook in, it has been blitzed on an OCD level by me!) and they invited me in and showed me a painting done nearly 60 years ago by the Artist/Art Therapist who owned this house. The painting depicts the view from her studio (now my reclusive housemate's bedroom). There was a farm directly opposite and fields with trees. I truly believe, despite the urbanisation of the surrounding area - yes, there is no longer a farm opposite! - that this house has hardly been renovated (or cleaned!!!) since. And guess what else?! My neighbour speaks French and I have arranged to go over and converse so as not to lose my language skills now that I no longer live in France. Obviously I’ll bring a bottle of Bordeaux and some chèvre for the ocassion.


Serendipity. I am smiling. I will bring back the Art Therapy to this extraordinary house. I will dust off the soul of this place and nurture it. I will bring creativity back to this place and I want to welcome you all to come and experience this space with me in my new Art Therapy room.


Let’s polish the dust off our souls and nurture them with creativity.






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