Community Seed Bank for Colour
As precise industrial processes have engineered the mass production of synthetic, uniform colour palettes, a world of vibrant botanical colours has been eclipsed.
For centuries, botanical colour was a central part of agriculture, economics, spirituality and culture across the globe. No longer integrated into our daily experience, the multi-dimensional value of plant-based colour is rapidly disappearing, and along with it tacit – farming and alchemistic – knowledge.
The depleted value of natural dyes has caused their seeds to become an increasingly scarce, endangered resource.
The Community Seed Bank for Colour (CSBC), initiated by Studio Claudy Jongstra, is an open-source seed bank for historical perennial dye plants that aims to restore botanical colours to our everyday lives.
Not only will the seed bank enliven our visual world, it will also stimulate biodiversity, preserve cultural heritage, protect indigenous species, and foster autonomy for small-scale farmers by creating access to un-patented, increasingly scarce seeds.
Since 2000, Studio Claudy Jongstra has been actively engaged in restoring these forgotten colours on their biodynamic farm and through collaboration with regional farms and botanical gardens. The Community Seed Bank for Colour (CSBC) is the natural extension of Jongstra’s ongoing specialized botanical research and experimentation, which remains intrinsically connected with regenerative agriculture and the integrity of local materials and ancient knowledge.