Friday, 23 December 2016

Tereska Shepherd Dandelion

I have a Canadian friend living in Toronto and she sent me this beautiful card the other day - she knows I collect dandelion objects for the archive and she has contributed information and objects in the past too. 
This beautiful card 'Dandelion Taraxacum officinale' is from an original watercolour by artist Tereska Shepherd (website The card has now been added to the Dandelion Archive.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Dandelion Killers

I am still here in California on a residency. We're in a heatwave at the moment - it's far too hot!
I was in the hardware store the other day and noticed these weedkillers. There was a whole shelf full and most of them had dandelion images on the label as an example of which weeds the chemicals can kill.
I have also had two meals here containing dandelion leaves in salads. It seems a bit bonkers there's a whole industry dedicated to killing dandelions when you could just harvest and eat them.

Friday, 16 September 2016

NASA Dandelion!

I'm currently on a one month residency at Montalvo Arts Centre in California. It's a wonderful place nestled in woods near Saratoga, about an hour from San Francisco. 
California is in a drought at the moment and everything is dry and dusty, however i have found a few dandelions on and near the lawn in front of the Villa at Montalvo, so they are surviving here. 
A few of us from the residency were invited to go to NASA in Silicone Valley the other day - how exciting!! And, under a tree beside the road on the NASA site were a number of dandelions - so i collected a few leaves for the archive (of course i did). A great moment from a great trip.

Sunday, 4 September 2016

M&S Dandelion part 2

Look what I was given! (See post below)
I went to request the display showing dandelions from the M&S store in Preston - and they let me have it for the Dandelion Archive - brill. I went to collect it the other day - it's massive and is made up of 4 long panels. There's dandelions on 3 of the panels plus they gave me the 3D dandelion leaf too. These are the biggest objects in the archive

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Marks & Spencer Dandelion display

I was walking down the high street in Preston the other day and I spotted this window display at the Marks & Spencer store. Showing their range of new uniforms for school children, they have also used large tins of paint and a few drawn plants in the background - a couple in b&w, a couple in colour and i was delighted to see they are dandelions! There is also a giant dandelion leaf. They are beautifully drawn and i'm going to try and find the artists name if i can. I was really happy I had my camera on me too so I could get a few shots.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

UCLan Dandelions

It was graduation week at the University of Central Lancashire earlier this month and I noticed the university used the design of dandelions on their printed material and online. I like graduation week: Preston is full of students in their gowns and caps and proud families all dressed in their best outfits and everyone seems really happy.
I got this image from their twitter feed and it uses the dandelion in seed presumably to represent wishes coming true.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Patrick Allan-Fraser Dandelion

I was invited to conduct an inventory of species at Hospitalfield, an art organisation based in Arbroath in Scotland a couple of weeks ago - it's an amazing place set within gardens, woodland and arable fields and in view of the sea. Go to the Hospitalfield website to read about its history and how it was set up by Elizabeth and Patrick Allan-Fraser.

While there I was able to spend time in the library and found this copy of 'Class Book of Botany, being an introduction to the study of the Vegetable Kingdom' by J H Balfour. Boasting  'upwards of 1800 illustrations' the one that I was most interested in is this one of a dandelion. Of the illustration is says "Runcinate leaves, a, and radical peduncles or multifloral scapes, b, c, of Dandelion (Leontodon Taraxacum)".
Patrick Allan-Fraser has written his name in the front of the book and dated it June 1872.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Dant Y Llew

Over the winter I was artist in residence for Peak in the Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales and spent 6 weeks there working on creating a colour chart to represent the landscape.
The colour chart considers the ecology, geology, economics, industry, culture and history of the Park. You can find more information about the commission on my website.

One of the earliest flowers to come up while I was there in January was a dandelion so I was happy to include it in the final 96 colours. Dant y Llew is the colour name (Welsh for Dandelion) and is number 38 in the chart.

Monday, 9 May 2016

Jacobus van Looij Dandelion

I was in Amsterdam last week and visited the Rijksmuseum while i was there. It's one of the most wonderful museums and we spent over 5 hours enjoying the artworks in the galleries. As usual i'm always on the look out for dandelions within art collections and was really thrilled to find one in a painting by Jacobus van Looij. The painting, entitled Blooming Clover, is oil on canvas and was painted in around 1897. There is a beautiful dandelion in seed in the top right of the painting.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Dandelion and Burdock

I have a number of food and drink packages in the Dandelion Archive each featuring dandelions in some way. Here is a bottle of Dandelion and Burdock from Marks and Spencer with dandelions on the label. Not liking the taste of Dandelion and Burdock it wasn't me who emptied the bottle, but a friend who kindly drank it so i could have it for the archive.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Sir Joseph Noel Paton Dandelion

I was in Edinburgh last month for a meeting about another project i'm working on and while there I visited the National Galleries of Scotland. I spied a dandelion in this painting by Sir Joseph Noel Paton The Quarrel of Oberon and Titania, painted in 1850. The dandelion, in seed, is below and to the left of Titania's foot. According to the label:
"In 1857, when the picture was displayed in the partially completed National Gallery of Scotland, an enraptured Lewis Carroll counted no fewer than one hundred and sixty-five fairies in Paton's microscopically detailed Shakespearian microcosm."

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

First dandelion of 2016

I'm currently on a residency in the Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales and I have been exploring the local landscape since I got here last week. It's been a very mild, wet winter here in UK. I have seen a few dandelions ready to flower up in Lancashire, where I live, but I saw this one here in Wales on Sunday 24th January - it seems so early. 

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Lebepur Löwenzahn

I have a number of food products in the Dandelion Archive - various teas, dandelion and burdock drink etc... and someone donated this for the collection.
It was sent from Germany and is '100% Bio-Lowenzahn' (organic dandelion) and it suggests adding it to green smoothies. On one hand i'm intrigued to see and taste it, but on the other hand I want to keep the packet perfect. I have until June 2016 to decide when it runs out of date.