Artist's embroidered seed art evokes bonds between nature and humans

Rena Detrixhe
© Rena Detrixhe

The natural world is full of relationships that we may not initially realize. In fact, nature is made of relationships -- just as human nature is made of relationships -- how we interact and interdepend with others, how we qualify our past memories, our current existence, and how we relate to nature as well.

Hailing from Russell, Kansas is American artist Rena Detrixhe, who uses traditional methods to transform materials she finds in nature into evocative pieces that echo the ephemeral spirit of particular places.

The seed seems to be one of Detrixhe's favourite materials. It makes sense, considering the seed's monumental place in the cycle of life, the history of humanity, and the future of food. We love this recent piece called "Heirloom," which features thousands of seeds stitched into sheer textiles, forming a ghostly layer of potentiate, living matter.

Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe
Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe

Detrixhe aptly calls herself a "hunter and gatherer of materials." Employing meditative techniques like embroidery and crocheting, she merges these repetitive actions with natural objects to create a "bond between place and person." She explains her childhood awe of nature:

I was taught to view and appreciate nature as if it were fine art. Spider webs, tree roots, veins of leaves, and cloud formations were works of art to be revered and contemplated. As a child, I spent most of my time outdoors exploring the world around me. This sensibility of finding awe and wonder in my surroundings has remained with me and continues to influence my work.

[..] By exploring these sentiments [of juxtapositions] and my own connection to the land and to place, I hope to form a connection between the outer and inner landscape. By working with place as both material and content the work becomes more than just a physical representation; it becomes an experience, an emotion.

Then there is this "Seed Pod Rag Rug," which is made from the foraged fruits of the American sweet-gum tree (Liquidambar styraciflua). The prickly seeds were gathered and stitched together to create a rough rug that evokes domesticity and wildness at the same time.

Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe

Here are a few more images of Detrixhe's work, employing seeds in orderly motifs, and a chair filled with neatly folded leaf packages. Both works manifest an overlap of nature and the manmade, of intention and chaos.

Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe
Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe
Rena Detrixhe© Rena Detrixhe

Subtle but meticulous, Detrixhe's work is thought-provoking, ultimately inviting us to examine our own inner relationship with nature. See more of Rena Detrixhe's work on her website.

Tags: Agriculture | Artists | Arts | Gardening


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