Just under three weeks ago, I was invited to participate in the Out of Nature exhibition, please read more about how it was created and for all the details on where it is and how to book tickets please click here: https://www.outofnature.co.uk/about . Rather than procrastinate whether or not I had a body of work to show, I was encouraged to seize the moment and share work that is still very much in the making. Tulips are my absolute love and during lockdown it felt like I’d been given permission to concentrate on a project that I’ve wanted to do for many years, only this year it had evolved to some rather special tulips.
Tulips captivate me and even more so the rare historical ones which back in their heyday, in the 17th Century, were extraordinarily expensive and then their worth dramatically collapsed, known as Tulip mania.
Historical tulips are quite hard to source but still available and there are tulip lovers who are mesmerised by their beauty, form and rarity. I was introduced to these by my friend and flower grower Polly Nicholson at Bayntun Flowers, who is a very passionate historical and breeder tulip grower. I’ve been capturing them for her for a few years now and decided last autumn to start my very own tiny collection to photograph.
Usually during March, April & May I’m traveling worldwide, capturing spring gardens and floral life but this year, as with everyone else, things were rather different. My small collection began to flower in mid March and from that point on I captured them every which way over the following weeks.
Some of my tulips are of the Rembrandt variety which were prized in the 17th century owing their striking painterly markings to a virus in the bulb. It’s an extraordinary thing to know that an aphid spreads this virus which infects the bulb and therefore creates a unique pattern in the petals, astounding and wonderful.
This volume of work is still very much in progress, so this exhibition forms part of my tulip journey. I have yet to capture the same tulips in their papery dried state and intend to try many more overlays, as seen in the Tulip Study I, which is something I want to explore further and polish a little more
I mainly concentrated on capturing their form, the way they fall or lie, their individual patterns and their striking markings, capturing them in colour with both black & white backgrounds, noting the differences in the way that richness is drawn out by the eye. I also loved to go back to black and white and feel these work so well, especially with the decaying tulips.
I’m so excited to share a glimpse of this exhibition with you, there are some truly extraordinary artists taking part, sculptors, potters and a woodworker, so I feel extremely honoured to be in such exceptional company. For each sale a donation is made to a very worthy charity, The Cart Shed, a Herefordshire based charity who help with mental health and provide therapeutic support in a woodland environment, for more information here is a link; https://www.thecartshed.co.uk/
If you are able to visit, do call and book in to treat yourself to a mouthwatering feast of seasonal produce at the Michelin starred restaurant Pensons; https://www.pensons.co.uk/ utterly delicious, yes I do speak from experience, what a lovely day out to put in your diaries (mine’s already booked in)!
For print details please scroll to the bottom (apologies that the top four prints are joined in pairs. the wonders of WordPress leave me exasperated!)
All prints are Limited editions of 20, available in A4 (£190 float framed or £150 unframed) or A2 (£400 float framed or £300 unframed). Other sizes can be quoted for.
These are all printed onto Hahnemühle Photo Rag Bright White, which is a bright white cotton art paper with an inkjet coating specially tailored for Fine Art printing. The lightly defined felt structure and characteristic soft Photo Rag feel gives every Fine Art print an incredible depth and three-dimensional appearance. This Photo Rag paper is acid- and lignin-free.
Britt Willoughby Dyer |07764938468 | firstname.lastname@example.org | @brittwilldyer