Friday, February 19, 2010
There has been much written lately about the artificiality of photography of plants on tags and in certain catalogues. The deceitfulness is, of course, unforgivable, but I have to admit I get some pleasure from the over the top liberties that are taken with reality ( whatever that is). If only these little crafty works didn't claim to have a purpose and instead of posing as a form of identification, they could be accepted as examples of Folk Art.
This was happening way before Photoshop,in the 1943 book 'The Border in Colour' by T.C. Mansfield, the 80 plates in colour are a super-real and jump of the page in vivid shades in which nature could not have had a hand. The photograph of Inula royleana, for instance, turns this this quietly elegant flower into a vibrant Van Gogh Sunflower.In another plate Astilbe, usually a cool semi-shader has been transformed into a blazing candy-floss. In the example I show here Gentiana, Malvastrum and Potentilla are coloured by the hand of someone unhindered by the knowledge of colour theory.