Shepherding plants and foraging (for food, medicine, and visual appreciation) have long been a part of my practice. I use most every part of the dandelion for food and drink – but for the flower I use only the yellow, leaving me with the soft white innermost. I’m fond of the impractical art of collecting the intact fluffy pappus parts of the flowers, holding and arranging them as a practice of gentleness and appreciation of their lovely, delicate nature.
Quietness and slowness has long been a part of my overall personality, but long-term injury has slowed down my life even more in the past years, leaving me spending a lot more time seated or in bed. And to fight against my narcolepsy and also depression in this stillness, I must create – through painting, drawing, writing, arranging, documenting, etc. In addition, health issues this past year have lead to me feeling fragile and honestly pretty mortal – like the seeding flower in my hand – encouraging me to treasure my moments and to think more about what I want to build with the time I am given.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Brenda Pagan is an artist based in Peoria, Illinois. This year, she has fully focused on her art career, and most recently helped founded the Peoria Guild of Black Artists.
For most of her adult life, she worked in elementary education (primarily in the arts in addition to science and social studies) and plant care or landscaping. She has worked as a ceramics technician, participated in and organized local art exhibitions, painted murals, in addition to other creative pursuits. ”
© Brenda Pagan