Saturday, October 10, 2009

Young shows us the kusamono she created in real time for Fox 5 Live

You can see the clip here You can see the entire display, Autumn Arts of Nature, at the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum at the Arboretum. Kusamono, literally "grass thing", are arrangements of one or more living plants. The containers are chosen to be appropriate for and complementary to the plantings.

The examples in our show are beguiling in their simplicity but clearly the product of a remarkably skilled designer. Grace, balance, the juxtaposition of contrapunctal plant forms, the use of color....they are enchanting.

I have always been fascinated by and drawn to plant communities in stressful locations: steep roadcuts, cliffs, rock faces or walls, sand dunes, dolomite barrens.... Part of that feeling is no doubt motivated by admiration for their perseverance and persistence, but another part is an appreciation of that beauty born of adversity. Difficult conditions often isolate and dwarf plants which seems to have the curious effect of exposing their essential forms. Many of Young's Kusamono are strikingly similar to tufts of vegetation I have seen growing in these inhospitable environs. It seems that Young, using some personal alembic, adds the essence of a plant or two or three to an appropriate vessel thereby turning base material into gold.

My, how I do go on!

1 comment:

Rocky said...

oh, please, do go on!