A redirection...

Bryony_working_in_garden.jpg

Earlier this summer I made the decision to wind down my product design work. I've absolutely loved turning my paintings into items like cushions, lampshades and mugs, and it has been such a joy to receive photos from customers sharing the products in their new homes. But --- the whole idea of scaling up, mass production, entering into the competitive world of high street retail has never sat very well with me. 

The reason I wanted to start Bryony&Bloom was very much inspired by the sense that we're becoming disconnected from nature and I was searching for a way to use my art to celebrate the natural world and bring a touch of wilderness back into the manmade world. Alas, creating more "stuff", even when it is loved by its owners, impacts the environment. 

So, for years now - even before I had the idea to start Bryony&Bloom back in 2013 - I have been really drawn to the power of public art, specifically murals, in helping to communicate important messages and enliven dull, lifeless environments. What's so brilliant about public art is that absolutely anyone can happen across it. It's not exclusive. And murals are all about enhancing existing structures - bringing colour and beauty into often unexpected places. Therefore, I've decided to redirect the focus of Bryony&Bloom towards the public realm and will not be making any more products. 

I will be selling the last of my stock at shows over the next few months, so if you're London based please do pop by, say hello and pick up a bargain - and very exclusive! - Bryony&Bloom original. I'll share event details on the website as well as on the Facebook page.

I'd like to thank you all for your support over the past few years, it has been such a pleasure sharing my designs with you, and I really look forward to sharing this exciting new phase with you all over the coming months and year. 

Best wishes,
Bryony x

Interviewed by Select A Maker

BryonyBengeAbbott_small.jpg

Earlier on this month I was interviewed by the lovely folk at Select A Maker, a website dedicated to developing the UK's bespoke interior decor market. Founded by interior designer Yasmin Chopin, the site links specialist designer makers, like Bryony&Bloom, with architects, interior designers and garden designers who are seeking unique, bespoke designs for their clients.

You can read the full interview, including my top 5 tips when designing with art, here

The richness, beauty and delicacy of Bryony’s designs are quite breathtaking.
— Select A Maker, 2016

 

 

Paint a mural with me!

_MJ26590.jpg

Over May bank holiday I will be running free mural painting workshops as part of the Botanical Bentley project I have been working on. This is your opportunity to grab the paints and co-create a vibrant wall hanging inspired by the gardens and collections at Bentley Priory! The more the merrier and all levels / ages are very welcome. 

Click here to find out more about the Botanical Bentley project and the research I've been undertaking at Kew Gardens...

 

Painting in progress

A quick progress report for mural number one at Bentley Priory Museum. I am currently half way through - the design has been mapped out on the walls and now I am focusing on each flower in detail. This mural celebrates the history of Bentley Priory gardens - each flower I am painting was first planted on the site in the 19th century - and is being painted in the style of Victorian botanical illustrations. With a Bryony&Bloom twist, of course!

Picturesque Gardens at Bentley Priory

Continuing with my research into the history of Bentley Priory, which feeds into the development of mural designs for the Botanical Bentley project, this week I've been looking at the 'Picturesque' garden and instructions for illustrating flowers.

In 1788, Bentley Priory was bought by the 9th Earl of Abercorn, who enlisted the help of architect Sir John Soane and landscape gardener Sir Uvedale Price to develop the site. At that time, Picturesque gardens were in vogue. They were intended to appeal to the soul as well as to the eyes of visitors. Anything too ordered or neat was rejected, and optical illusions were employed to create a sense of theatre. Planting was often irregular, almost random, with a wide variety of natural materials, textures and colours introduced to reflect the composition of landscape paintings. Hence Picturesque. As part of my research into this style of gardening I visited Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, to consult their special collections. William Gilpin's Essays on Picturesque Beauty was a great source of inspiration. Likewise, instructions for drawing and painting flowers 'according to nature' as laid out in Bowles's Florist provided a unique insight into the manner in which botanists examined plants in the 18th Century.  Very kindly, Kew has allowed me to share some of the images I took during my visit:

 Bowles's Florist Containing Sixty Plates of Beautiful Flowers, 1774, Frontispiece, reproduced with kind permission of the Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.