The Remedy Library is a rewriting of the herbal manuscript 
Libellus de Medicinalibus Indorum Herbis
by Martín de la Cruz and Juan Badiano. The herbal is split into
different chapters
from the head to feet, childbirth to death. The Remedy Library aims to be a learning tool, similar to the herbal, to better understand the climate crisis through the sharing of remedies. The library merges Aztec history, remedies, stories, responsible sourcing, and social movements to
create a practice
to better address social and environmental injustice. To read the book, begin at the first zine in the home page of this website which is arranged in a way that allows you to read each zine and interjecting essays on themes in the project.


To recreate the book, I began by talking with
. We spoke of remedies and family. Memories of when our mothers, aunts, grandmothers would take care of us, how we cherish those moments and how vital they are to
. The
were humbling and invigorating. They pointed out deep holes I never knew I had in my relationships which could only be filled with that sharing of knowledge and emotions between us. I went into these conversations expecting to know what they were going to tell me but instead I was taken aback by the unfiltered emotions and memories they shared. I began to vicariously experience their feelings and understand the importance of that experience. From there, I set out to create a methodology of sowing, cultivating, and harvesting
empathy
through
sharing remedies
. This was in the hope of harnessing the power of these conversations to care for people outside of our personal circle, to care for our environment and leave it prospering to people that we have not met yet.

In
sowing,
I had conversations with nine different people, representing some of the chapters of the herbal. The conversations started with people I knew and branched out to people I had lost contact with or people that were nominated by past participants. Due to coronavirus, these conversations that were first meant to be in person transferred to hour-long conversations through
Zoom
where we learned new things about each other, got to see each other’s
space
and shared knowledge passed down from generation to generation. We would end the conversation with the participant sharing a
remedy
and exploring its elements together.

In
cultivating,
I went on a
journey
in
and
all the objects needed for each remedy. I
,
,
,
talked
with anyone I could about
these objects responsibly; where I would pay tribute to the remedies’ culture and history while ensuring I supported my
local business
and
. All the objects were then placed into a
pouch
that I
using
, and together would act as a
for future use.

In
harvesting
, I enacted the remedies with the pouch under the blessing and guidance of the person that shared it with me when I felt a need to heal. This allowed me to understand the power of the remedy and the comfort it brings to the person that shared it with me. To me, this is a deeply political act as I have used the knowledge of others and my community to
heal
. For me, this is evidence of how the methodology has created a form of knowledge exchange rooted in care, independent of external
systems of control


A
is created for each chapter relating to all the materials gathered for the remedy, which recounts the journey of the sowing, cultivating, and harvesting of empathy with each participant. The zine begins with the corresponding
medicinal plant
from the herbal on the front page. It opens to the
first spread
which contains a recounting of the original remedy’s use in 
Aztec life
, and how it relates to the remedy that the participant has shared with me. The purpose of this is to create an awareness of Aztec history and its relevance to today. This page also allows us to get to know the participant, understand their relationship to the remedy and how it heals them, enabling us to empathize. The page is decorated with a
picture
of the participant or something that
reminds
them of the remedy, and their
handwritten name
to give them authorship over what they have provided me.

The
second spread
details the
objects
needed for the remedy and how I went about obtaining them, explaining the
that I went to or the
that I learned while creating the objects. This is where I can highlight
and underline the importance of giving back to the cultures that we are learning from through the remedies, such as buying spices from
instead of big chains. I also detail resources that I used, like
, so that its author is properly credited and people can buy the resources themselves to
the creators.

The
third spread
is an interpretation of the cultivation aspect of the work that is less individualistic. It is a moment of reflection from what we have learned and positions the reader in an environment where they are more attentive and open to empathy. This is where a connection is made from the remedy shared to an existing “
”; not one of the body, but one of society and its natural environment. This connection is made between the remedy, original chapter, and social injustice by relating similar themes, physical elements, and consequences. This relationship allows for the reader to enter a space filled with pain from the injustices and not feel
overwhelmed and helpless
. Rather, they are filled with the caring nature of the sharer of the remedy. The reader learns how social and environmental injustices are
; a major point the work tries to make. What then follows is how that social and environmental injustices are infringing on
in a multitude of ways. This comparison is made for three main reasons. The first is to show the severity of these injustices. The second is to highlight that even if the UN has outlined these principles, there is nothing that binds governments, companies, or organizations to 
. Therefore, the third and final reason is to emphasise that we as individuals need to use our
to ensure that governments, companies, and organizations are held accountable for their infringements. The double page spread ends with resources on how to better educate ourselves on these injustices and how we can do our part for systemic change. This is done through sharing
,
,
reading material,
etc. that are dedicating themselves to bring justice to the people affected by these ailments, amplifying the voices of the most effected.

Finally, each chapter is
concluded
with a poem describing how to carry out the remedy yourself. This page not only acts as instructional but as a piece of writing that sets the tone for a healing practice, influenced by 
by
Bruce Nauman
from 1974.

The artist book is the collection of all
zines
and their corresponding
pouches,
taking form as The Remedy Library. The artist book will also have 
essay
inserts that will expand on deeper nuances of the project like:

·       The abstract of the work,

·       The role of intersectional environmentalism,

·       The methodology of the practice,

·       The role of empathy,

·       The ethic of care,

·       The work as a pedagogical tool,

which will be dotted between the zines to give the reader a better understanding of the work as they discover the remedies. The zines are
booklets
printed on
single-sided recycled A3
paper using soy ink. The two colours selected for printing will be two colours isolated from the
drawing of the plant
in the corresponding herbal chapter of each zine. This is to highlight the beautiful drawings of the Aztec herbalists and act as a continuous connection to nature through the reading of the work. Pre-Coronavirus, the work was to be printed and scattered through the city on trains, benches, between books, on shelves. Due to the risk involved in contact, that part of the project was haulted. The A3 pages will still be able to be printed by people who wish to have a physical copy of the work.

Ultimately the Remedy Library’s goal is to act as a resource for people to be healed by others and then, in turn, help heal the earth. The object pouches act as a reminder for people to constantly learn new skills and do activities that engage the hands and encourage a physical connection to the land that surrounds us, and our bodies that protect us.

This website has been designed so that you can experience the whole book online. Just click along on the homepage and let your interests guide you.