For the love of concrete!

I have fallen hard for working with concrete and textiles. So much so, my entire art practice has shifted. Like a girl in love, all I think about it getting closer to the object of my affection. In this case, it is a slurry mix of concrete and pieces of fabric. 

concrete flowers in progress......

concrete flowers in progress......

There is a beautiful synchronicity going on here. The golden thread has not been lost on me. Months ago, I proposed a Frida Kahlo design for Petcasso, an annual fundraising event and was quickly approved. This proposal included weather proof flowers in the design - little did I know at the time I would be practically obsessed and completely adept at making these by the time this project rolled around!  
Before this, I read The Language of Flowers, a novel by Vanessa Diffenbaugh that reignited my passion of symbolism in flowers and from there I started casually collecting more books and dictionaries on the subject. (I am a researcher at heart) 
But ...this wasn't the first time I researched the symbolism of flowers. I had created a book in school complete with descriptions, hand drawn illustrations and little stories about the flowers that sadly I no longer have. My teacher at the time asked if she could keep it, and I just gave it away without a thought. Funny how things come full circle when you least expect it. 

Now I am ready and excited to blend these passions, textile art and symbolic story telling. Creating flowers out of concrete takes time and as I am forming the blooms I think about the infomation I've read about them and the meanings that have been attached to them over the years. Some of the negative connotations are replaced by a redeemed version, one the flower wants to tell. And so, their stories are formed.  

The Language of Flowers: A Novel
By Vanessa Diffenbaugh

Stay tuned for a new series of floral art to be unveiled shortly!  

And check out this book, The Language of Flowers. It is a sweet and easy read, but the way the main character and those around her communicated with flowers is what really grabbed my attention. .