Plants & Pressings

Field Buttercup, 2013, detail of installation, pressed buttercups
‘Field Buttercup’ (2013). Detail of installation, pressed buttercups.
‘I Wanted Her to Love Flowers’ (2018). Installation, blackthorn, pressed herb robert, black medick, wild carrot and scarlet pimpernel.’
‘I Wanted Her to Love Flowers’ (2018). Detail of installation.

On walks with my family, I was taught how to press wild flowers and learn their names. In a sense, they represent my education in nature as well as my fascination with plants and wildlife. As a child, I would manipulate grasses and float the flower heads in river pools. I played with leaves, joining them together with thorns from blackthorn bushes, and with my brother I played a game with plantains stalks and flower heads. Wild flowers were and still are the things I look for and look at when I am walking in the landscape.

Pressing Book 1963 - Heather Rigg Artist & Creative Archivist
‘Pressing Book 1963’, pressed flowers.
'Four Foot of Grass', 2010 installation, grass, tape, 4'x4' - Heather Rigg
‘Four Foot of Grass’ (2010). Installation: grass, tape; 4′ x 4′.
‘She Said’ series (2015). Sedge grass,mount board, paper; 29cm x 38cm.
'Flowers and Pain' series, 2010, window installation - Heather Rigg - Artist & Creative Archivist
‘Flowers and Pain’ series (2010). Window installation, gorse thorns, pressed and dried flowers and seeds, pricked paper, Japanese paper and cotton thread; 2.8m x 1.3m.
Pressing book and diary of the Scottish landscape, 2014 - Heather Rigg
Pressing book and diary of the Scottish landscape (2014).
‘The pressed flower books and sheets made by the artist in the 1960s, 1980s and more recently have always had a relation with a time, a place and sometimes people. The works today are more considered, and are also a vehicle for other ideas. She opens up associations through the grouping, placing and naming of the plant material, for example, pineappleweed connects to a childhood walk, whereas scabious from Moor Farm is setting up new associations of rural buildings and a prehistoric site.’
Kate Stoddart, Curator.
'Ordered Anger’ 2013, paper, cactus thorns and archive box - Heather Rigg
‘Ordered Anger’ (2013). Paper, cactus thorns and archive box.

‘Field buttercup’, installation, 2013, pressed field buttercup - Heather Rigg
‘Field Buttercup’ (2013). Installation, pressed field buttercup.

The plants both inhabit and invade the studio space, relating to the decoration, structure and dilapidation of the studio, connecting the rural to the urban.

Gate at the end of a long field
Pineapple Weed

Walking to a favourite picnic spot beside a beck we had to go through a gate at the end of a long field. The gate always was muddy after the cows had churned up the soil and water from the stream, which had spilled into the gateway. Clusters of pineappleweed were always growing in the area under and around the gate. The fun bit was the sound of our boots as they knocked against the dry seed heads which released the smell of chamomile. The place and the flower are linked and imprinted in my memory. There is also a sense of loss or longing – of not being there – the flower captures a moment of time, a moment of a place and a moment of happiness, a moment of freedom.

‘Even when one is no longer attached to things, it’s still something to have been attached to them; because it was always for reasons which other people didn’t grasp. There are places in memory you do not wish to go with others.’
Brian Dillon, ‘In the Dark Room, A Journey in Memory’.