Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Kew diary 1

What to do with a year's pass for Kew gardens? Go there lots and record the beautiful plants, trees, wildlife of course!
I'll never be able to do it properly justice but will have a go over the months, maybe do a bit of drawing there when it's less busy. This visit was on a very cold day so was mostly spent indoors. March is Orchid month at Kew - hundreds of the things in wild bursts of colour - so exotic when all is a bit drab and wintry outside the glasshouses.


 I'm particularly drawn to the cactii - the shapes are just wonderful.

Another indoors gem is Marianne North's gallery. It's possibly the worse presentation of paintings I've ever seen but is strangely compelling after the initial overwhelming tumble of colour and detail. Two rooms stuffed with botanical paintings by an intrepid woman born in 1830 I think. She set about travelling when she turned 40, visiting around 17 countries, often painting alone in forests, jungle, plains and swampland. What a woman!

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