Natural Histories, Jane Price’s collection of ‘butterflies’ at 45 Southside Gallery

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Natural Histories, an exhibition of butterflies and moths, by paper and textile artist Jane Price is at 45 Southside, Plymouth until October 31

Working from the edge of Dartmoor, keen walker and paper and textile artist Jane Price draws her inspiration from nature. She considers how the art work is viewed and unifies the container or frame with the content. Her butterfly boxes are displayed like prized specimens, while the dragonflies represent contemplation by a river bank with all the preparations for a day of fishing.

She told Arts+Culture: “I set out to create the smallest textile pieces (on the end of a pin) that I could make, which coincided with my fascination since childhood, of collecting and collections; in this case of butterflies and moths.

“The motivation to collect when others may not see the objects also interests me, hence the secrecy of the antique wooden drawers. The drawers act as a frame as they are hung sideways on the wall, but also suggest the obsessive collector. The ‘insects’ are made from felted silk wastes, stitched and stained with wire armatures supporting their fragile wings.”

Natural Histories at 45 Southside showcases amongst her paper works, her most recent work, photograms of plants and butterflies giving this historic technique a modern twist.

Like the plants depicted in her photograms, Jane grows many of the plants she uses to make her paper art in her garden or on her allotment. Pond sedges, Day Lilies, Bearded Iris and Bamboo are collected from her garden, pulped and arranged into inlaid paperworks, which are further embellished with bees and carnuba wax and gold pigment.

As with her butterfly boxes, she unifies the artwork with its ‘container’ and frames her paperworks in old gilt frames. The result are stunningly subtle, yet vibrant, three-dimensional works of art.

• Jane Price’s Natural Histories is at 45 Southside, 45 Southside Street, Barbican, Plymouth, until Saturday, October 31