Wednesday 9 May 2012

back to the drawing..

-Why so quiet there Roberts?
-Shh, I'm talking to plants.

— Hello Mr. Leaf
— Look out, I will sting you!
— No you won't.
—  I will too. Look how nettly I am. Look at my spiky serrate margins. I will sting you hard.
— No you won't. You are just hamming it up for effect, like my straight friend with the wacky  haircut. In fact you are actually some kind of mint.

Seems to me that if you want to get to know a plant you have to be very quiet and ask its structure how it has come to be that way. Not that a plant isn't danced into being by electrons and photons and watery sludges and like the rest of us, of course it is, just as active, just as interactive. But if I want to tell the story of me and Mr. Deadnettle leaf here, for instance, I feel I have to make a special effort with my own moving about. And being quiet is the most energy-intensive thing an animal can do, according to my good friend Mrs. Tiger who is very good at it, but reckons she needs to sleep for 18 hours a day to keep on top form.

So it's back to the old-fashioned looking and describing with a pencil-crayon for me, one of my favourite technologies.


  1. A poseur Mr Leaf maybe, but he is very handsome.
    I wonder if you've seen the work of Karl Blosdfeldt?

    1. thank you, uphilldowndale, yes, Blossfeldt's work is lovely, like scanning electron micrographs only nicer. I like that although he tidies up his plants & tarts them up for the sake of Art they are still individuated and all about the way the structure of each particular plant has come about in the context of its actual life.