GBMD: Subversive Bees

Previously on Veg Plotting, I told you about Everything in the Garden is Lovely. Everyone at choir fell in love with this set of wirework bee 'formations'.

Like them, I initially thought they represented the bees' 'waggle dance' or other messages they communicate to each other. But I then looked closer (click on the pics to enlarge if needed) and found...

... that even in art, there's an opportunity to be a tad subversive and get the viewer thinking just that little bit more :)

I've been trying to decide which one is my favourite...

... this one has resonance because I was in a similar situation when I left university in 1980 - though at least I was lucky enough to have a university grant during my studies - and I had to take a job I didn't really want (civil service) instead of one related to what I'd actually studied (Agricultural and Environmental Science).

This is a slightly different post for Garden Bloggers' Muse Day, but I hope you don't mind not having a poem this month, especially as...

... there was good news yesterday re two of our major DIY store chains pledging to withdraw products harmful to bees.

Update: How remiss of me - I haven't credited the artist :( It's Cathy Miles - the exhibition also has her dragonflies, plus wirework watering cans and garden tools, which are all rather fun. However, it's the juxtaposition of these wirework bees and the text which have stayed with me the most since visiting the exhibition.


  1. Love this post! What wonderful and humourous and thoughtful constructions!

  2. Lucy - glad you like it! Yes, they show how humour really helps to make a good point :)

  3. Fascinating, and appropriate considering that bees are in the news at the moment. Flighty xx

  4. I think they are great; funny and provoking

  5. All the above - plus cute. Thanks for sharing :)

  6. Oh, fabulous, I do love the gently subversive messages. Though then I stop to think about the reason for the comments and get mad again...

  7. Bees will always get my love. These are adorable. Do you know Val Littlewood's work over at Pencil and Leaf? One day, I'll treat myself to one of her paintings. Thanks for dropping by my catalogese post -- yes, I'd love your links. You have my e-ddress?

  8. Brilliant! Although not a poem a perfect illustration of what musing is all about :) I wonder if the exhibtion is heading elsewhere - my bee keeping friends would be fascinated.

  9. Wonderful post VP!! The whole composition could be a basis for a book.

    We raised bees on Canada's west coast...just a year or two..a great learning experience.

    The wire work is sensational and the lighting is perfect for the installation.

  10. Hi everyone - so glad you like these and enjoyed both the words and objects :)

    A warm welcome to Dani and Catherine Howard who've commented for the first time :D

    Helen - yes, I've know Val's blog since the very early days of Blotanical. She's back in the UK now and will be teaching a course at Easton Walled Gardens later this year.

    Anna - I'll see if I can find out from The Pound Arts Centre this evening.

  11. Anna - I asked at the arts centre last night and the exhibition was curated just for Corsham. Whilst that's disappointing for you and your beekeeping friends, it's nice to know we have something unique here in Wiltshire!

  12. I must get down there with Steve pronto - they look brilliant!

  13. I love this bee post! The wire bees are gorgeous and I love the messages - very different indeed. Glad to hear the news about the DIY stores - it's about time

  14. Lu - yes, you must!

    Anna B - I had a long chat with the artistic director who curated this exhibition on Monday. She's thrilled with the reaction to this blog post :)


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