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The Secret Garden

The Secret Garden

I was about 9 years old when I first readThe Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. I remember being enthralled by the tale of Mary Lennox, a self-centered and scared little girl who loses both parents at once, moves across the world from India to England, inspires her sickly cousin to take responsibility for getting well, makes friends with a local lad, and then the three children transform an abandoned walled garden with such care and enterprise that it brings joy to a grieving household and widower for the first time in many years. 

Mary’s life at the English country estate seemed idyllic to me. No parents to boss her around, left to her own devices to wander at will through the house and grounds, and befriended by birds and a down-to-earth young boy who is ready for any adventure. 

Through many re-reads and watching every movie and tv interpretation of the novel, the part that most sparks my imagination is the idea of a secret, overgrown and neglected walled garden. Just the place where magic and enchantment can flourish! Making things grow is a magic all its own and it’s where Mary develops a rapport with wildlife  and finds the solace and wonder she badly needs after her own devastating losses. 

I was deeply affected by Mary’s experiences and today I see myself release all that passion for wild botanical beauty and love of story in my artwork. For most of my life my love of books, myth, story and magic was something I kept very separate from my everyday life. It was a wondrous day indeed when I discovered I could communicate these mysteries through my collage artwork. The wildness, fantasy and abstract settings of my work are amarvelous way to reveal and integrate my inner life. 

It brings me great joy to share my art on accessories and home goods, and I hope it brings a little enchantment to your everyday world. 

Posted April 26, 2021

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