Contemporary Pastoralism: Blue Star Equiculture

Blue Star Equiculture, a working horse rescue and sanctuary farm in Palmer, MA., will be my studio for a month this fall.

 Photo by Doug Anderson. Meet Tex and Mark, gentle giants between 2000 and 2,700 pounds each. 

Photo by Doug Anderson. Meet Tex and Mark, gentle giants between 2000 and 2,700 pounds each. 

Co-owners Pamela Rickenbach and Paul Moshimer, along with writer/photographer Doug Anderson, recently spent the afternoon introducing me to the 35 big-hearted inhabitants of Blue Star Equiculture. Each horse has their own story, some as loving carriage horses from Philadelphia or farm draft horses; some are recovering from injuries and others are being harnessed up for work. Full of personality and wanting to work, these beautiful horses are going to be incredible collaborators and teachers during our time together this year.

Blue Star Equiculture could also be called Blue Star Sapie(n)center. Many volunteers come to work with the horses and organic farms. It is a horse/human community center thriving on hard work. At risk youth find important and grounding work as well as, a large number of elderly volunteers come to groom and massage the large beings on the farm. It is an epicenter for rural Palmer, MA

 Photo by Doug Anderson. Pamela Rickenbach from Blue Star Equiculture talking with me about the history of the farm's land and rescue horses

Photo by Doug Anderson. Pamela Rickenbach from Blue Star Equiculture talking with me about the history of the farm's land and rescue horses

 Photo by Doug Anderson.  So Tall!!

Photo by Doug Anderson.  So Tall!!