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  • Writer's pictureBurcu Çenberci

Accidental Magnolia Face Wash

#Magnolia #Magnoliagrandiflora #MagnoliaTree #KültürPark #Izmir #Park #contemporary #miniature #painting #bloom #garden #naturalpigments #peacefulday #lapislazuli #malachite #goldenreflections #gardenpainting #miniatureart

 50X50cm (Inclusive of trims) Shell Pigment, Gouache and 22 Carat Gold on Acidfree Cardboard.
Accidental Magnolia Face Wash

On a fine day in June, after the rain, I rushed to the park, not to miss the fresh clean air. As usual I visited the Magnolia trees full of fragrant blooms. There are two very old trees on each side of the fountained pool, their smooth trunks are huge and so are their glossy leaves and moon white flowers.

The flowers have a subtle yet very cooling, sweet, slightly sour and refreshing fragrance. Petals are not thin, they are tick and pleasant to touch. To me everything about Magnolia grandifloras is very calming, very grounding and soothing. Being in the presence of such a grand tree with lotus like blooms is a true blessing.

That time I went to visit the one across from the one I painted earlier. The tree stands elegantly in an enclosed garden with a line of bushes and each corner is marked with a tall thuja bush. I made way through the opening in between the bushes in the plain garden. The magnolia tree is so big that its branches reaches out passed the bushes, so one has to bend down slightly to enter in order not to hit her head. I started to smell the fragrant blooms and at some point I saw a bloom slightly above and reached out to the branch it rests on, grabbed the branch and pulled it towards my nose! The aroma of the flower takes me away!! Then I gently released it back up.

Natural pigments and white gouache on acidfree cardboard

As I was standing still under the magnolia blossom, drops of rain water started to fall onto my face! I had forgotten that it had rained and was unaware that the cup like Magnolia petals actually hold the rain water! With great surprise and in awe I pulled my mask down and stood there in gratitude allowing the magnoliazed rain water wash my face and purify me.

From then on I started to pick a few Magnolia petals (which have matured but not yet dying) and place them in a bowl of water for some time and drink it! It is such a pleasant drink I recommend to everyone. You can easily make your own flower water. I also make it with rose and jasmine petals. All the fragrance of the flowers magically get infused in to the water and when you drink it, it is like drinking its aroma and taste simultaneously! so delicious!

This painting is my second experimentation with natural pigments. For the sky I used lapislazuli and for the greenery, malachite, my two favorite natural pigments. Sorry to say the true beauty of lapislazuli is not really captured in the photos. In reality it is more vibrant. The more I use natural pigments the more I like them. They are gift of nature just like flowers are!

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