Vicki Mason: Statement
Statement related to Forget-Me-Not necklaces in Bundanon exhibition
Vicki Mason, who is keen about all things plant related, has created a riff on what many of us know as the Carrie necklace or Nameplate necklace. But hers are necklaces with a twist.
Plant literacy is declining and Mason, in an attempt to raise awareness about this contemporary problem has created a series of nameplate necklaces based on the many weird and wonderful names plants are given. As Tim Entwisle (Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne) states, naming plants is part of our cultural “story-telling” (1). In schools and universities plant identification and botanical education is increasingly neglected. The Junior Oxford Dictionary which removed many plant words from its 2012 edition such as acorn, fern, violet and willow was roundly criticised by international writers and thinkers who pointed out that we can’t care for what we don’t know.
Plants are not merely decorative background fuzz in our lives but are essential to our lives. In neglecting to nurture plant knowledge and the naming of plants we reveal we are not paying attention. Naming confers respect and recognition and if we can’t name our plants we risk their loss.
Help improve plant literacy, wear your conversation starter Forget-me-Not necklace out and about to spread the word!