While Wiersma resided as artist-in-field1 researcher at Studio Makkink & Bey in the Noordoostpolder, Club Donny approached her to write a text for their issue on the ‘Polder’. For this occasion she observed its wild plants 2 in motion:
‘You, creeping thistle3, dandelion, broad-leaved dock, shepherd’s purse, silverweed; shake off your fleece, release your plumes of seed. Nestle your tap roots deep in underground clay. You, catchweed, hound’s tongue and burdock; sharpen your tiny barbs. Adhere to skin and hair. Arm yourselves. Against modish trendsetters.’
‘Nimble marram grass, windswept glasswort, fearless willow-herb, valiant poppy; did you know you belong to the adventurous category of pioneering plants? That your globetrotting germinative power has the ability to conquer new lands?’
‘Be stubborn hogweed. Irritate the skin. Of those who leer at you constantly. They’re waiting for you. With their gleaming secateurs. Meanwhile I implore you. Stay away from here. Go forth on shifts in atmospheric pressure and multiply the verge and forest fringe with your waving umbels.’
‘You, snowflake, dead nettle, ground ivy, milk-weed and autumn crocus; bow your sweet stems. To the diligent earth workers. Entice them with your calorie-rich elaiosome. You, squirting cucumber; find a fast-flowing river and prepare your ammunition. Open your fleshy bombs at the right moment.’
Pappus accelerates at the request of Mr Beaufort.
(End of fragment No.1)
- Field studio at Studio MakkinkBey, 2012
- For this article Wiersma related her observations on the dynamics of wild plants to Louis Le Roy’s garden designs.
Fragment 2: ‘Evening news: Wild gardener Louis Le Roy has died.’ In the nineteen seventies he designed a number of ‘experimental nature gardens’ for the new housing estate ‘Lewenborg’, where I grew up. As a child I felt at ease amid his rampant-growing structures and body of thought, amidst the capricious folklore of the seasons, with the alluring complexity of natural processes. (Image: Lewenborg, 1982.)
- ‘Free Style Polder’, series of illustrations on the geometric plots of land at the Noordoostpolder, 2012