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Revisited: Amy Ross

Posted by Alix on 8 January 2009

I naively said that I was going to do my top previously featured artists from Birdyblog’s first year ages ago, predictably so far I’ve barely blogged any! So, to revive the category we start the year with Amy Ross. I blogged some of her pictures in April last, and have since been keeping up with her blog. She continues to produce these beautiful delicate watercolours which look kind of pastelly and un-arresting until you get closer and look at the detail, then you see what she describes as implausible hybrid creatures – there’s a touch of the surreal, but in a very gentle way. I am totally charmed by the work. Birds have been a pretty popular trope recently (which obviously is great for me) but I am a little bored now by the cuter, simplistic depictions of birds that crop up; Ross’ work offers non-straightforward, surprising birds, and it’s this I really like.   This is her artist statement:

I am interested in the idea of artist as mad scientist. My drawings offer visual hypotheses to the question: what would happen if the DNA sequence of a plant or mushroom were spliced with that of an animal? Using graphite, watercolor, and walnut ink on paper as well as directly on gallery walls in site-specific installations, I portray animals morphed with branches, mushrooms, berries, and blossoms, thus forming implausible hybrid creatures. These images subvert the traditional genre of botanical illustration by approaching the close study of the natural world through the lens of genetic engineering and mutation gone awry.

And these are some pictures:

sparrow_rudbeckia

snowcockmushroom_cap1

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