I've spent the time since Tuesday's election in the garden: the most restorative place I know. I've been weeding, watering and spreading the last of the Olbrich leaf mulch that's been sitting in a pile in the driveway. I have noticed, however, that I've been humming union songs as I work!
This weekend, when temperatures are expected to be in the 90s both days, I'll be indoors. But I've got a garden waiting for me there as well. Mark brought me this lovely new book, "Angie Lewin Plants and Places," from the Kohler Art Library on the UW-Madison campus. I love Lewin, which is easy to see if you type her name into the search box at the top of my blog. She's a British artist: painter, printmaker, fabric designer. Lewin finds both inspiration and imagry in weeds, wildflowers, and natural found objects like stones and feathers.
This is the first book I've seen that is actually about Lewin and her works as opposed to the garden books I have that she's illustrated. If you are an artist who looks to your garden for ideas and inspiration for your artwork, Lewin is a great example. She reduces the most complex flowers — Alliums and Queen Anne's Lace, for example — down to their essentials. Form, rather than scale or perspective, is her guiding principle which makes for very unusual compositions.
What I find particularly satisfying about "Angie Lewin Plants and Places" is that it is large enough that you can study her work in detail. It also includes working drawings and paintings which I often find more interesting than the finished prints. If you are curious about Lewin's work, you can look at the book's pages on her website. You can order the book there as well.