From Overworked to Flourishing

Maya Uretsky

About Maya Uretsky

Maya Uretsky is a student at Gann Academy. In her spare time, she enjoys photography and music. She plays the harp and loves art. Maya also loves the outdoors. She loves to camp, backpack, hike, ski, kayak, etc. Maya lives in MA with her parents, little sister, cat, fish, and gecko. Maya enjoys farming and taking care of the earth. While art is not her strong suit, she puts a lot of effort and emotion into it and will continue to do art since it is so enjoyable.

About From Overworked to Flourishing

My mixed media painting represents how shmita allows the overworked, dying, stiff land to rest and in turn the land flourishes then next year with its new nourishment. My piece addresses how shmita would benefit the food systems because we would have more food if the land we produced our food on is healthier. The land can only be healthier if we work it to the extent that it can tolerate. Julian Sinclair says, “we should not treat it as merely a resource to be perpetually exploited for our benefit; the land must also rest.” The land needs rest or else it will over time, like people, tire our and be unfit to be productive any longer. In addition, planting sweet grass tells is that “gratitude plants the seed for abundance.” Practicing shmita makes us grateful for all the food we can eat in a non shmita year. Being thankful for the food we eat helps us to grow as people and encourages people to help others. If people overwork the land to the extent where the land no longer can produce crops, they will also gain gratefulness for food but if shmita is practiced, the land will last longer and be healthier.