'A collection of new botanical collages by the American artist Jane Hammond, entitled ‘Natural Selection’, was shown for the first time in May this year at the Lyndsey Ingram gallery in London, to coincide with the famous Chelsea Flower Show. At first glance the collages seem to fit perfectly within the age old tradition of botanical illustration and herbaria. But a closer look reveals that they are actually imaginary compositions. In them Hammond seeks to create “a cocktail of fact and fiction, of things found out in the world, things I invent, and hybrids of the two. I’m looking for a bold unity that is built upon dissociation and tension, as well as harmony.”
The artist uses a combination of engraving techniques along with painting, photography, recycled objects and digital elements to create “collages d’art”that are one-of-a-kind pieces in large format, exploring the infinite complexity of the natural and artificial world. “Making a collage starts with foraging, being on the hunt, and searching,” she explains. “Then the process of selecting and assembling takes over. The elements start to talk to each other and tell me where they want to go. I live for the journey, the surprise – the unique ensemble that each piece becomes. I don’t like the uniformity of surface in traditional printmaking. I want something fresher, nore varied and multilingual.”'