A public garden & cultural center

Linda Stillman

Prickly, Tender and Steamy: Artists in the Hothouse 
Glyndor Gallery | April 8–May 18, 2014


Linda Stillman, who works in a variety of media, focuses on time, memory and nature. Of particular interest to her are fleeting moments of experience and common, often overlooked, objects, which she collects and preserves for the viewer. Wave Hill Flower Diary is an installation of 45 drawings made from the pigments of fallen flowers collected by Stillman in the Marco Polo Stufano Conservatory. Arranged in a grid, these drawings document the daily process of Stillman’s work during her residency at Wave Hill. Many of the flower stains fade over time, serving as another way to mark the passage of time.

I visited the Conservatory each day I was in residence at Wave Hill. At first, it was just to enjoy the plants. I soon started noticing blossoms that had dropped from the plants and, after consulting with the gardeners, began collecting them. Jen Shovlin, the gardener in the Tropical House, even began leaving me a pot of fallen blooms each day, tucked away among the plants. On my daily visits to the Conservatory, I began to admire how every few days the plants were rearranged by Jen and the gardener in the Palm House, William Wallace. They are much like curators re-hanging art to give each visit a new visual pleasure.

The flower diary drawings started out of my need to have samples of the colors of the plants in the Conservatory as a reference for my drawings. I discovered that some blossoms were better at rendering their pigment for my drawings: the Plumbago indicia, orchid, and Viola petals had the most intense colors. At that time of year, the Thunbergia grandiflora and Pyrostegia venusta (Flame Vine) were the most prolific flowers, but their lovely colors only produced muted grays. The collection of flower-stain drawings developed into this installation of the plants of Wave Hill at a specific time. This piece became a way to memorialize the daily pleasure of gathering the flower blooms and to document my time at Wave Hill.

—Linda Stillman

Stillman’s work has been included in exhibitions at The Arts Club of Chicago, Chicago, IL; Hunter College Art Gallery, New York, NY; and the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY. The artist had a solo show in 2012 at The Gallery at R&F in Kingston, NY. Stillman earned her BA from the University of Pennsylvania, and MFA from the School of Visual Arts and Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Wave Hill Flower Diary, 2013, flower stain and pencil on paper, 45 drawings, each 5” x 5.” Courtesy of the artist.

Winter Workspace 2013
Glyndor Gallery | January 2 – March 24, 2013

Linda Stillman’s Winter Workspace studio, 2013. Courtesy of Wave Hill.

Click here for more information about the artist.

The Arts at Wave Hill are supported by the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc.; Michael J. Shannon; Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation; the National Endowment for the Arts; New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; New York Community Trust Edward and Sally Van Lier Fund; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; The Pollock-Krasner Foundation; The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation; and by the Cathy and Stephen Weinroth Commissioning Fund for the Arts.