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Garden History

Every garden is a replica, a representation, an attempt to recapture something.

Robert Harbison Eccentric Spaces

After Parkinson

In this series of small mixed media images I returned again to my battered reprint of John Parkinson’s 1629 Paradisi in Sole Paradisus Terrestris (Park-in-Sun’s Earthly Paradise). Seen as one of the first western garden manuals, it collected woodcuts of a thousand known plants found in England at the time, and organizing them in terms of  “The Place, The Time, The Names, The Virtues.” Many of these plants were brought from North America and many others later introduced here.

My walking and study merge in recognitions of local wild plants within Parkinson's garden manual, as I rethink my relationship to the place, the time, the names, and the virtues of what is now my present paradise.

All images are mixed media: litho, acrylic and ink. 18x13-19x14 cm $125.00

Garden History


The drawings in Escape and Wilder were inspired by John Parkinson’s1629 Paradisi in sole Paradisus Terrestris, one of the first garden manuals printed in England. Where Parkinson's collected woodcuts are used to organize the name, the place, the time and the virtues of native and newly introduced specimens, my images layer what is familiar, recognizing them as escapes naturalized in Canadian fields. Colour, as well as stencilled patterns based on historic pattern, suggest the growth and form of the plants amplifying the familiar identification, but also placing it within the domestic. Beeswax, a final layer, evokes a further mnemonic with the aroma of honey that emanates from the work.

Escape All images 76x102cm, mixed print media on washi, acrylic, oil and beeswax mounted on panel. $1800