The Garden Wall space has been considered, planted, documented and discussed over the past few months. It's sturdy soil and barren surface brimming with possibility to hold both wildlife and art.
The founder of Garden Wall, Lucie, recently took part in a collaborative project with Deptford X Festival and Volunteer South London titled 'Artist's on the Phone'. Sharing weekly phone calls with Lewisham Resident Andrea, Lucie was able to facilitate creative discussions and consider conversation as a form of artistic material. Offering support and creative interests for a vulnerable member of the community during lockdown, Lucie and Andrea were able to establish their shared interest in plants and their re-found appreciation for their garden spaces. Recognising the importance of the outdoors and the empty garden undergoing transformation, they have shared stories between each other of the gardens from their childhood, the expansive gardens of their relatives to the small plants stalls set up by neighbours. They described and discussed a profound range of gardens, including those altered by memory and distorted from time, and found the 'beginning' or transitional state of a garden in it's unmade, overgrown state as a liberating metaphor.
Beverly Buchanan - described as 'ephemera, an artifact related to the artist' this image shows the artist in an outdoor site a 'day before work begins'.
Guggenheim Fellowship Report Document, 1981
Photocopied book of black-and-white photographs and typewritten text with color cover
Thinking about how methods of making could be exchanged through spoken conversation, Lucie prepared and sent a material box to her befriendee collaborator Andrea. This gift was prompted by their first phone call with the 'Artist's on the Phone project'. Sharing their stories of flowers and plants growing in both their gardens, the box contained lavender from Garden Wall soil and a large fold out photograph of the garden floor, transporting one garden to another.
Wire, string, paper, pens, and adhesive materials were sent to Andrea as tools to connect thoughts into a sculptural or written context if she felt inspired to do so. As stated by the artist, 'I like the idea of us both giving the other a set of creative prompts and enabling the development of two artworks that combine, correlate as well as contradict'. The box also included a collection of artist references who's art practices relate to nature, gardening and the outdoor elements. Highlighting lesser known female, LGBTQ+ and BAME land artist, the artists mentioned can be seen below:
Artist reference list:
>Nancy Holt - Sun Tunnels
>Derek Jarman - Prospect Cottage
>Beverly Buchanan - Untitled (Double portrait of Artist with Frustula Sculpture) and Guggenheim Fellowship Report Document, 1981
>Ana Mendieta - Silueta (Silhouette)
>Claude Monet - Bridge over a Pond of Water Lillies
>James Turrell - Deer Sky Space
A note to Andrea...
Lovely to speak to you last week and learn more about you and your garden. I've put together a few materials prompted by our phone call, including some artists who I am fond of and outdoor images I've collected. Feel free to have a play, a think, maybe it's something to write or just something to read and wonder.
Hidden Garden, 2020
Inkjet print, tape, nails, plastic, sweet pea husk, thread, oil and chalk pastel, acrylic paint, metal clip, paper