'Shortest Day' by Clare Curtis. Screenprint, edition: 75, Image size: 60 x 40cm (approx), Paper size: 72 x 50cm
An early frosty winter’s morning on the allotment. Colours are muted by the mist hanging in the air and the plots are bare except for the cabbages and kale creating bold shapes against the hardened soil. Yet there’s a pared-back beauty in the die-back and the dormant plants in December. The structures of the chicken wire cylinders, angular corrugated iron and the pyramid of canes with a dessicated crop of runner beans are revealed. A man heads home, a haul of Brussels sprouts for a festive dinner slung over his shoulder. He casts his eye back towards the plump Redwing, a solitary sign of life. Nature pauses, tools are packed away, but the bird’s presence reminds us that it’s only a momentary respite in the cycle of the seasons.
Shortest Day is the final print in Clare's series of prints depicting the changing seasons as viewed from her local allotment.