The Garden Book

The Garden Book (2000), inkjet, 12 x 20.3 x .5 cm., 34 pp. in an edition of 10. Ink drawings and manipulated photographic images printed on folded pages. Digitally produced. Five of the edition are perfect bound in a white glossy soft cover. Five of the edition are bound by master bookbinder Fred Pohlmann in kangaroo skin leather with an impressed plant form on the cover and the title on the green emu skin leather spine. 

Collections: Artspace Mackay (4/10), State Library of Queensland (2/10) (6/10), State Library of Victoria (3/10),  Artist’s collection (1/10, 5/10, 7/10, 8/10, 9/10).

The Garden Book was part of my ongoing attempt to reconcile the role of the hand-drawn and the photographically-derived imagery in my practice. I slipped back and forth between these modes of image-making since the advent of digital imaging technology in the early 1990s.

In The Garden Book I reflect on the cycle of gardening; the sown seed, the sprouted seedling, and the full blooming flower which ripens into a fruit containing more seed. A narrative of images and text establishes the letter ‘O’ as both a seed and a symbol of continuity.  Sometimes the plant is an altered photographic image, sometimes an ink and brush drawing, while at other times rows of the letter ‘t t t t t t t t’ parade like freshly-sprouted seedlings, or the letter ‘o’ wafts randomly across the page as seed does across the sky in late summer. 

The Garden Book is part of my Candide’s Garden series where I was experimenting with the relationship between the garden bed and the white page, between planting rows of seed and writing lines of text.