Natasha Clutterbuck

 

My Story

I am a British artist living and working in Somerset with my two young daughters and hedgelaying husband. I am passionate about drawing vegetables using natural raw materials found within 10 miles  of where the vegetables grow which is often near my home. This passion has led me on an exciting and unexpected journey. 

My work has been featured in Gardens Illustrated, Country Living and Town and Country magazines from which I have gained national and international exposure and sales of my work. My vegetable collection was established in 2009 with a commission for six vegetable drawings that were the starting point for the refurbishment of a local pub, The Pelican Inn, Chew magna. As the in house artist I also created bespoke artwork which was used in the design for menus and compliment slips whilst also being displayed on the walls giving the pub a real sense of identity.

Being the artist in residence at The Yeo Valley Organic Garden where I run workshops through the growing season and in 2012 I created a giant pumpkin mural in the newly refurbished canteen up at the  Head Quarters in Blagdon. This is one of my largest and most challenging piece of vegetable art to date and documents the fantastic story of the development of a giant pumpkin. It has been the catalyst for a dining hall refurbishment project I recently completed at The Downs School in Wraxall.

My vibrant, earthy pieces appeal to gardeners, food lovers and art lovers alike. People particularly enjoy purchasing and commissioning bespoke pieces for their newly designed kitchens as dramatic statement pieces.

My work is available as originals, limited edition giclee prints and postcards. Please refer to my shop which falls into four main collections, The Kitchen Garden  , Veg Patch , Florals and New Releases for availability or to my gallery to see examples of bespoke commissions I have worked on.

Vegetables

I use locally grown, seasonal, organic vegetables wherever possible to draw and eat. I grow a selection of these in my own plot but I also source them from local farm shops, green grocers, friends allotments, produce shows, ploughing matches and The Yeo Valley Organic Garden.

My ancestors were farmers in Lincolnshire so perhaps it is from them that I have inherited my deep rooted appreciation of growing vegetables and their relationship to the land.

“Often referred to as heirloom varieties the French call them by the evocative name, les legumes oubli`es, the forgotten vegetables
— Simon Akeroyd, RHS Vegetables for the Gourmet Gardener

Developing my work in the ornamental veg patch at the Yeo Valley Organic Garden, I have become inspired by unusual heritage vegetable varieties grown for their aesthetic value and in combination with other plants for organic pest control. They have greatly influenced my work bringing an exciting new flavour to my collection.

Bridgewater bean, Burpees golden beetroot, Black Knight Carrot, Crimson Flowered Broad beans and fantastic Tromboncino courgettes are all examples of unusual vegetable varieties I have drawn here.

Natural Raw Materials

I am committed to using natural and locally found raw materials to create my work. These include willow charcoal produced on the Somerset levels, red iron ore and ochres found in the Mendip hills. I use mud and oak bark found near to where I live. 

“I like the directness and rawness of drawing. There’s an honesty to it”
— Natasha Clutterbuck, Gardens Illustrated magazine 2013

This aspect of my work has become increasingly important making it more true to the essence of exactly what my work is about.

I am passionate about passing on what I have discovered to younger generations in this increasingly digital era. I believe it is important to stay connected to reality and to stay in touch with the earth. Maybe this is why it is so important to me to use mud in my work applying it with my fingers as this is the common element that connects us all to our own exsistance.

“In a world where we are becoming increasingly alienated from what we eat growing our own vegetables is a fundamental way to reassert the connection between ourselves and our food
— Carol Klein, RHS, Grow your Own Food