artwork by Sylvan Thorncraft
These paintings have been inspired by an ongoing study of the weedy plants growing of their own accord where I also live, many of which have wonderful healing properties. We decided to let the lawn grow to see who was there. Relying heavily on botanical remedies, this was as much about getting to know our new helpful neighbors, as nature study. It has been amazing to see so many medicinal plants emerge from what, on the surface, had looked like an ordinary suburban lawn. As I considered how these generous, healing plants had been mowed for years and years, yet continued to grow, I was deeply impressed by their tenacity and resilience. Inspired by religious icon paintings, I started building this body of work to share my passion for these incredible beings.
The autumn of 2016 proved to be a mast year, and the red oaks here dropped an incredible amount of acorns. While sketching in the yard, I began to see the acorn patterns as maps, or star charts, or maybe a spread for divination. The results of this exploration can be seen above.