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(92) Melinda Rodnight - Comfrey/Symphytum
About this Artwork
Comfrey is a perennial herb, dating back over 2,000 years. It’s scientific genus is Symphytum; loosely translated it means ‘to unite’ or ‘grow together’, indicating the usefulness of this herb in treating injuries. Throughout time it has also been called Knit bone, Boneset, Knit back, Bruise wort, and Slippery Root, amongst others.
I am inspired by Goethean observation and sense perception; perception that integrates self-reflective and critical thought, imagination, and careful, detailed observation of the phenomena. Through this approach, the organism teaches me about itself, revealing its characteristics and its interconnectedness with the world that sustains it. I investigate the whole organism as part of the larger experience of life. By creating stories of plants and animals, we open up a new understanding of our fellow creatures as dynamic and integrated beings. Enhancing my sense of responsibility, I allowed the plant to reveal something of its true nature to me.
For a number of years, I have been exploring the physicality of shape in my work, as well as the relational presence of light and shadow and how I am drawn to a form because of its physical manifestation. I am intrigued by natural and organic forms and exploring and building on the sensory experience and evocative recollection of these shapes and forms, and the responses that they give rise to.
In my studio, these explorations reveal themselves, dynamically, through my art making process. Through the held memory they come to life again in a new form. It is only by finding ways of transforming our propensity to reduce the world to parts and mechanisms, will we be able to see, value, and protect the integrity of nature and the interconnectedness of all things. This demands a new way of seeing. An interchange of experience, memory and creative reply becomes a dance, a call and response, a reciprocity of perception.
Link to Melinda’s Art Aviso profile HERE
Melinda was supplied with the following page from Newnes’ Pictorial Knowledge Encyclopedia:
On things that interest you and me
Hidden Beauties in Weeds