Rachel Dein - Sculpture
I make plaster casts of plants and flowers which record all their texture, pattern, and delicacy in fine detail. My compositions can be as simple as a single stem or as complex as a field of wildflowers, leaves, and grasses.
My method, adapted from a glass-casting technique learned in college, is deceptively simple. Flowers and foliage are arranged and pressed onto wet clay. Once the plants are removed a wooden frame is placed on the clay and the plaster is poured in and allowed to set. The clay is then peeled away, and the plaster cast is pushed out of its frame. I then wash off most of the surface clay, leaving traces to enhance the detail.
Whether in small tiles with a single flower portrait, or large panels that suggest an entire garden full of blooms, my botanical castings reflect my desire to capture the ephemeral. They track the progress of the seasons, marking the plants at the moment when they are most alive. Like a fossil of long forgotten plants, each plaque is a ghostly vestige of time, an act of remembering: a summer day in the garden, a perfect magnolia at its peak, or the first daffodils of Spring.
Middlesex University 1989-1991 BA (Fine Art) Hons 2(i)
Propmaking Apprenticeship, English National Opera 1992-1993
2016 RHS Hampton Court Flower Show
2016 RHS Chelsea Flower Show
2015 Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art
2015 RHS Hampton Court Show- Wellbeing of Women Garden
2015 RHS Chelsea Flower Show
2014 Hampstead School of Art
2014 RHS Chelsea Flower Show
2011-13 Garden Suburb Gallery
1999 St Pancras Chambers
1999 University of Essex Gallery
1998 Raymond Revue Bar
1996 The Cambridge Darkroom Gallery
1996 Arad Museum / Jerusalem Theatre
2015 Garden’s Illustrated Festival, Malmesbury
2015 RHS Garden Product of the Year Finalist
In Bloom: Creating and Living with Flowers by Ngoc Minh Ngo
Gardens Illustrated Magazine – Feature March 2014