Monday, August 10, 2009

Flowers of Tin

Have i mentioned that i enjoy flower photography? I like the play of light on the diaphanous petals of poppies in particular. Compare your mind's image of a translucent, ephemeral poppy swaying in a gentle summer breeze with etsy seller merritthyde's wonderful metal flowers. Their size (often 4-5 inches) and weight are like the antithesis of my poppies yet i love them for that very reason. (Please click on the photos to go directly to her etsy shop.)

It's always interesting to hear how an artisan comes to choose their medium of expression. I asked merritthyde how she came to be a tinworker:

"I began painting on tin in 1998 and it soon progressed into experimenting with materials, technique and 3d objects. I wanted to transform it in to something totally new and beautiful… for the tin to be “reborn” without losing the integrity of its journey. In retrospect I can see that this was a personal journey as well as an artistic one and it continues to this day to challenge me."
"I love looking for materials that would otherwise be thrown away, buried or discarded and giving them new “life”. Things like rusted roofing tin, old wood and barbwire become works of art and beauty while still retaining a sense of history and character."

There is the real substance of the material in merritthyde's flowers: made of tin, the petals are quite rigid, and it would have some heft in your palm. There is also a sense of the weight of Time in the knowledge that the flower was created from old, used roofing tin. And that aspect has been accentuated by the artists fine paint and stressing techniques. These are truly handsome flowers and will bring joy for a lifetime.

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