A Message from the Artist
It has been a delight to read the responses to Cow parsley bank and to have been part of this special, unexpected collaboration. I have been amazed by how this weaving together of word and image seems to have peeled open and revealed so many extra depths somehow. Each piece powerfully stands alone and yet when put together, it feels to me that we are taken right into the emotion of the land and our individual places in it. I really resonate with all the pieces of writing, and it is thrilling to see how this image has been able to be translated into such personal thoughts.
I can’t remember who posed the question, ‘Do we shape the land, or does the land shape us?’ I often think about this and my own ancestors who worked the fen fields and depended on them closely for their survival. Certainly this place, this cow parsley bank and the Fens is a place I know I love, but did not choose and this remains a continual, joyful mystery for me.
Here’s an extract from notes written at the time of the painting:
It’s April again. Today the fragrance is intoxicating, but not harsh. The cow parsley reaches past my shoulders as I wade through, its dampness spraying white spot petals all around. My clothes take on a new polka dot design.