On a far too rare visit to California, I had the opportunity to travel down the coast to Monterey Bay, re-visiting familiar spots from my childhood including Lovers’ Point beach and Asilomar in Pacific Grove, Nepenthe on the Big Sur highway, and Carmel-by-the-Sea.
On our return north, we stopped at the Monterey Aquarium and I was stunned to find so many similar corallines in the bottom of this magical pool in the Rocky Shore exhibition. Exquisite!
Edge of the Sea exhibition of my original seaweed pressings and new giclee prints opens 3rd Oct and runs until the 30th Oct at Hangar Art Gallery, Fenton Barns, North Berwick, EH39 5BW (tel: 01620 850 946).
I will be at the gallery today, Sat, 3rd Oct from 12 noon – 4pm. Stop by for a glass of wine and see the show!
I have been working on new pieces for two exhibitions in East Lothian this autumn; one at Hangar Framing, Fenton Barns starting 3 Oct and the other at The Scottish Seabird Centre, from 11 Nov – 26th Jan 2016
In the interim, sewing and stitching with friends has encouraged me to look at designs that work across different mediums. One unexpected but inspiring source has been an instructional Chinese watercolour book on how to paint carp. The text is obscure, but the illustrations demonstrate fluid compositions weaving patterns of objects, line and colour, as well as judicious use of whitespace, to create a harmonious whole. Not as easy as it looks.
The translucency of goldfish reminded me of the many late summer leaves of Delesseria sanguinea and Phycodrys rubens that have fallen from the sea recently… and so I have waded in.
Located on the first floor of the John Hope Gateway centre of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, the exhibition is free and open from 10am – 5:45pm daily, until 15th June 2014.
Gathered from the East Lothian coast between Gullane Bents and Tyninghame Beach, the sea flora pressings of Rhodophyta (reds), Chlorophyta (greens) and Phaeophyta (browns) are displayed primarily by colour along with some wonderful Victorian books on collecting seaweeds. The larger entrance display holds bolder specimens from wracks and kelps to edible laver and sea lettuce.
I will be exhibiting about 40 of my seaweed pressings in the John Hope Gateway Centre at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh as part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival. The show is curated by Kirsty White and runs from Sat, 5th April to 15th June 2014.
This collection reveals the extraordinary range, beauty and diversity of seaweeds that grow in the rock pools and kelp beds along the shores of East Lothian, from Gullane to Seacliff. Collected through the seasons, they show the life cycle from vibrant new growth to mature form, with the accompanying changes to pigmentation and ultimately decay as time and tide take their toll. These are real specimens (although at first glance they resemble botanical illustrations) based on an old Victorian tradition of herbarium pressing, but presented in a contemporary context. The images are striking in their simplicity and surprising by their similarity to land-based flora, taking graceful organic forms resembling trees, leaves, flowers and feathers – their exquisite abstraction of colour, shape and form questioning the division between science and art.