Garden of Escher

Chaumont-sur-Loire, France, 2009


The Garden of Escher was made on the occasion of the 19th edition of the garden festival of Chaumont-sur-Loire. This temporary garden explores the idea of creating a planting plan composed exclusively of black and white flowering plants. Commonly, black is avoided in planting plans because it tends to create 'holes' in the landscape. White is often omitted in colourful schemes because it has the reputation to 'steal the show'. In the Garden of Escher these two colours are given a platform for closer inspection. By juxtaposing only hues of black and white a wider spectrum of subtle pigment variations becomes perceptible. The planting plan included a black and a white variety of pansy, tulip, iris, poppy, angelica, anemone, hollyhock, and cornflower. The planting area was surrounded by a path of Carrara marble chips on one side and basalt chips on the other. With the passage of visitors the two mineral shades gradually mixed creating a gradient from dark to light. This project was made in collaboration with Katarina Brandt.