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Materia Medica

Can pharmacognosy and spirituality merge together to treat mental health conditions?

Mindful Garden: Materia Medica is a masters project focusing on an art-science interaction, exploring ways herbal medicine can treat mental health related conditions. This publication is for informational purposes with the aim to share knowledge and inspire. The work produced explores the boundaries between pharmacognosy and spirituality whilst using art as a tool to aid scientific enquiry. Please note: it is advised to always seek medical advice from your GP or healthcare provider.

Project Aims:

Aim 1: To produce a Materia Medica that documents 5 herbal plants relating to treating mental health problems.

Aim 2: To explore links between pharmacognosy and spirituality.

Aim 3: To experiment artistically with the visual side of the project of documenting the appearance of the 5 herbs.

The project is set to publish the book in 2024 and is currently previewing a sample.

Author and illustrator: Samantha Cooper (MA Art in Science)

Collaborator: Dr Rachael Symonds (Plant Physiologist)

Research visits: The John Rylands Library, Special Collections, Liverpool World Museum, Botany and Herbarium Collection.

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