Week 9: banana leaf and stem

banana trunk monoprint1

Intermittent rain this week so not much paper being made. The neighbour next door chopped down a small banana trunk so I was able to make some prints with the leaf and stem. The swirling imprints of the banana trunk are like the rings of a tree, with serrated edges. The middle line of the leaf is like the axis of a line of music, “the force that through the green fuse drives the flower” ~ Dylan Thomas.[1]

banana leaf1

These patterns in nature are my inspiration. I draw them in ink in my ‘field notes’ book. When water is added they become fluid, bleed through into the next pages, stain the empty blank pages with a “fluidity akin to memory”.[2]

As I draw the lines of the leaves and stem I am in the banana grove, listening to the wind rustling through the leaves. I hear the chopping as the trunk is felled and cut into pieces for me to cook up and turn into banana paper. Transformed by water and sunshine into paper; by water, ink and thread into pictures.



[1] Dylan Thomas, Collected Poems 1934-1952 (London: J M Dent & Sons LTD, 1971), 8.

[2] Louise Irving, “Learning Japanese” (Honours Thesis, Southern Cross University, 2008), 26.


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