The story of the world begins with a garden. The ancient Persian idea of throwing down a carpet in the desert as an ‘instant garden’ encapsulate something about the relationship between humans and nature: our incredible creative ability to manipulate and magic nature out of nothing. At the time of beginning this work, I was struggling through a medicalised process of reproduction (IVF). I started gardening as a comfort and escape from the medicalised fertility process I was going through. Soon I was researching Dutch Flower paintings and discovered that these were highly artificial: each image an elaborate construction, from dozens of studies spanning seasons and continents. Borrowing several techniques from the Dutch Masters, I photographed generic, hothouse varieties of flowers in the studio alongside garden weeds and insects. These were manipulated, assembled, and repeated until a random but decorative pattern emerged.
Lisa Creagh graduated from Goldsmiths in 1994, and more recently, with a masters in Photography from Brighton University. Between 1997 and 2001 she lived and worked as an artist in New York, teaching digital imaging and curating exhibitions. Upon her return she founded The Brighton Photo Fringe in 2003, a vital network of photographers, still running in conjunction with the Brighton Photo Biennial. As a producer and curator she has delivered large-scale photographic projects for international artists and delivered talks at various colleges . In 2006 she received critical acclaim for the originality and collaborative nature of ‘Tidy Street’ where she transformed a street in Brighton in to a series of lightboxes utilizing the windows of small terraced houses. Prior to her MA she was awarded two Arts Council, England Individual Artists Awards for exhibitions reviewed in photographic journals and featured on television and radio. Her current ongoing project, “The Instant Garden” was begun in 2008 and has been exhibited widely and was recently awarded a development grant by The Arts Council of England.