Home Grown


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Home Grown 

24 March - 14 May 2022

Jeremy Brown

Home Grown presents a new body of work by Jeremy Brownin celebration of the beautiful street trees of Canberrathe city he was born and raised in. This exhibition invites viewerto wander the streets of our garden city and allows appreciation of some of the more hidden aspects of its natural beauty. By combining two main threads of practice, furniture making and botanical illustration, these works create a juxtaposition between the natural and built environmentsbridging the disconnect between the origins of raw materials and final product

Canberra holds an international reputation for its green streets, with over 760,000 trees lining the suburbs and other public spaces. Many of Jeremy’s fondest childhood memories were created in and around thembut at the time the trees themselves were often overlookedAs he hagrown, however, so too has his appreciation of Canberra’s trees and the creation of this body of work has allowed even deeper understanding of and personal connection to them. Canberra’s street trees also hold high economic value in the environmental benefits they providebut sadly large numberrequire removal each year. Their value, however, does not have to be lost here as this value transcendtheir use in nature and suburbia. Bgiving new life to the materials and highlighting their beauty, Home Grown shines a light on their further potential and promotethe use of local resourcesin this case, one quite literally growing on our doorsteps. 

The design elements in the featured timber stooldraw inspiration from iconic local architecture, whilst the timber for each has been salvaged from a different species of felled Canberra street tree. Chosen species include claret ash, English elm, London plane, pin oak, river oak, and silky oak and the minimalist aesthetic allows the inherent beauty of the materials to take centre stage. Accompanying each stool is an original watercolour botanical illustration, representing the living specimen of each chosen tree in a way that might be more familiar to the viewer. These paintings are observational, painted from living specimens, and aim to accurately depict the plants as they grow on our streets. In contrast, the design of the furniture is abstracted and shaped by the makers hand, taking inspiration from the human madeThis contrast between design-by-nature and design-by-human is both a tool for linking raw materials to their final product, and an ode to the harmonious existence of the two elements in Canberra’s own streets.

image: Jeremy Brown, London plane (platanus x acerifolia), 2022. Photo: Courtesy of the Artist