Monday, February 13, 2017

What the Flowers Know



What the Flowers Know
mixed media collage,  11 x 8.5 inches
ingredients: vintage book cover and ephemera, dried plant parts, found objects, image transfers, mica, brads





When I made this piece, I was really thinking about this subject in the poetic sense: personification, metaphor, just to name a couple of literary devices that might apply. But I recently read a very thought-provoking and seemingly incredible article in the the New Yorker called The Intelligent Plant by Michael Pollan.

"The new research, he says, is in a field called plant neurobiology — which is something of a misnomer, because even scientists in the field don't argue that plants have neurons or brains.
'They have analagous structures,' Pollan explains. 'They have ways of taking all the sensory data they gather in their everyday lives ... integrate it and then behave in an appropriate way in response. And they do this without brains, which, in a way, is what's incredible about it, because we automatically assume you need a brain to process information.' "  (PRI Science Friday)




Amazingly, he goes on to explain detailed experiments that show apparent presence of memory by plants, as well as responses to stimuli, such as hearing, and even the ability to learn. To me, this is poetic in itself, because it makes us aware that all living things are more alike than we ever thought possible. How could we not be connected, when we are made of the same stuff?  Life started as a single cell, and grew and differentiated from that cell, so perhaps we shouldn't be surprised at the commonalities among different forms of life. You can listen to the podcast of Science Friday or read the article by following the links above.






















6 comments:

  1. What a stunning piece, I simply adore this and Michael Pollan is amazing.. Being a gardener, I have long suspected that plants shared info and thought that they developed flowers simply to seduce us into loving them... 😉 Xo

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    1. Thanks for the good words, Cat! Yes, Michael Pollan is a really interesting guy, writes about a lot of cool stuff. The plants did develop flowers to seduce someone... pollinators!

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  2. Just wonderful Sharmon. I have read somethings about this- nature is truly amazing.

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    1. I know, right? I am always amazed by the new things scientists are finding out all the time - usually things that we've always been told were impossible!

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  3. gorgeous mixed media collage, i will follow you and your beautiful art.

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    1. Thank you so much, Dortesjs: I appreciate the kind words and the follow!

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