contemporary art

Floral Pilgrimage yr III // #Blauwhaus Artist Residency, Belgium 25.04.19 - 17.05.19

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www.blauwhaus.be

Absolute pleasure to be invited to this residency, exhibition, lecture and collaborative working space set up by Wim Wauman in a Castle in Waasmunster, green green Belgium. The project morphed from being a celebration of female arts and crafts makers / muses with him at the helm as Blue Beard to a working unit of craftspeople, with talks and tours organised exploring local history and Bauhaus ethos. Together we worked towards expanding the heraldic crest of Waasmunster - a mermaid holding a turnip - via many tangential connections found in The Wasteland / Waasland, hyperborea - land of eternal Spring and immortality, flat earth theory, colour blue, trees of heaven for presentation as a parade, featuring performance and installations on May 26th.

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Powers of x 10 conceived of by animator  Isabel Bouttons  and droned by  Melvin Vanderstylen  at the May Day Picnic, 2019.

Powers of x 10 conceived of by animator Isabel Bouttons and droned by Melvin Vanderstylen at the May Day Picnic, 2019.

As part of the residency, I gave an introduction to my work as The Floral Pilgrim to students at The Academie of Waasmunster and invited class to create their own floral bouquet in a small cone to befit the Monster of Waasmunster, replacing the turnip with something more delectable.

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Props for the Parade //

At the Academy I worked with glass sculptor Veerle Verschooren and tattoo artist / sculptor Cardon Lander; to create an illusion of a water source from one section of the groups communal table, with the idea of adding floral touches as an alternative well dressing. The small brown pots, designed to display grass blades are part of it. The full installation will only be revealed after the 26th ;)
The object on the right is a pipe, one of 8 made, hoping to plug in a gap at the Local Museum that has an extensive Happy Smokers display rack but a comparatively limited selection of pipes. These will then form part of an installation on a picnic blanket embroidered with group poem and Waasmonsters created by Ilse Van Roy. One pipe will hang on a walkingstick designated for Wim, designed and conceived of by Warre Mulder and Chantal van Rijt.

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Daniel Ost, 2012 -  Belgian Floral Art Superstar Installation  - at the Roosenberg Abbey, Waasmunster.

Daniel Ost, 2012 - Belgian Floral Art Superstar Installation - at the Roosenberg Abbey, Waasmunster.

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Floral Pilgrimage III // The Dutch Flower Route _ What 👁️ Saw 22.04.19 - 25.04.19

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The Flower Industry

Monday 22nd: Finding the Bluemenstrecke

Left from Folkestone with Liz and Carol, entered via freightlane, pulled over with an emergency stop and boarded train - France - Belge (picnic lunch in Flora!) - Haarlem / start of the Flower Route. Stayed lovely Air B’n’B where other guests mistaking my height for being Dutch owner kept telling me where they had left the keys.

The shut Pilgrim Museum in Leiden displaying it’s Dutch still life charm.

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Tuesday 23rd: Keukenhof

Bluemenstrecke, bright fields behind the hedges; straight lines peeking round. Cut tulips for sale on the side of the road and rows rows of flowers being sprayed. Lunch in Leiden after dining out on feast, swathes of star, bulbs, grape hyacinth at Keukenhof “Mega Garden.” Night in Waaldwick: bedazzled by glasshouses, skies and skips of flowers.

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Wednesday 25th: D I S C O

Visited Flora Holland / Flower Auction and entered the NO tourist zone. Serious forward sloping arena of mainly manly back apparitions, with flower trolleys rotating to pop music. Dif. wheels of $$ fortune spin, while a man holds sample as trolleys move behind, like some kind of whirlitzer, where you realise that you cannot process your surrounds at the pace they move in so let it go, minor whiplash at brush with price / scale.

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Sarah Boulton // Zinc Violets ongoing

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Zinc Violets is an ongoing work by my friend and ephemeral artist extraordinaire Sarah Boulton. Together we have collaborated on a few projects - as she now lives in Wales / was giving birth! / was on a residency - I have performed works (normally minimal gestures) on her behalf in London.

She invited me to be part of this project last year, at it’s opening in Masons Yard where Polly Wright and myself laid two identical paper poems down, very slowly at the same time.

Mason’s Yard and Sarah Boulton present an exhibition happening in the space of an evening, comprising of two intangible artworks. One is a prediction and the other, a scent. Both have occurred and will be occurring.

Extract from Press release, Masons Yard

The poems and project relate to a place called Epen in Holland, which given trace element zinc in the local water supply has changed the nature of the local violets, becoming a beloved emblem of the area.

As part of my Floral Pilgrimage pursuits, I am hoping to journey to Epen and find the violets on Sarah’s behalf. She wrote to me to tell me her latest thoughts, after I realised that although the residency at Blauwhaus was close it was too far to be able to visit that trip.


Currently, the next time Alice or Polly does a search in Epen, I am planning to spend the time predicting and every time I remember that I am predicting I will write down a short observation of what I see in front of me wherever I am. I am interested in the distance and these transformative flowers being at the end of the work, stretchable and transformative as it is.

What does a prediction feel like? To me it seems quite unlike most Contemporary Art, and yet a lot about contemporary life.

The flowers are always there in the back of the mind. Influencing and influenced.

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