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Australian Dreamscapes - Claire Takacs

I have not know a better spring since I moved out of the city. The garden is bursting with promise and I have a renewed sense of purpose cutting back perennials and weeding. 

In Galah Issue 1 we featured renowned garden photographer Claire Takacs and I simply cannot go past her beautiful book 'Australian Dreamscapes'. I'm very happy to let you know that it is now available to purchase on Galah's website.  Here is a little extract from my piece on Claire from Issue 1, titled 'Chasing the Light': 

"I'm looking at a photo of a garden in central New South Wales. I'm there. The sun is setting behind me. My eyes dart from the eucalypt-forested hill in the background, down through the blue and purple zigzag of perennials to the yellow and blurred grasses in the foreground, while a constellation of stars or snow, or... what are those exploding insect things in the sky glinting at me? I don't know, but they are delightful and golden and I can feel the cool night air coming. I want it all, so I drink with my eyes and gulp my tea and stare, and before I know it I'm chanting the Jack Kerouac quote buried somewhere in the not-front part of my brain about how the only people for him are the mad ones, 'the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow Roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars'...

Claire [Takacs] is an Australian photographer at the top of her game. She takes remarkable photos of remarkable gardens all over the world. She has published two books and is now working with Noel Kingsbury - in my view the greatest writer about contemporary naturalistic garden design - on a new book to be released in 2021....

Before COVID put an end to most of her travel plans for this year, Claire had hoped to visit the Tokachi Millennium Forest in Hokkaido, to photograph the park commissioned by entrepreneur Mitsushige Hayashi to offset the carbon footprint of his national newspaper business and to offer Japan's mainly urban population the chance to engage with the landscape, forest, gardens and farms.

In a reverse way, Claire's photos have let me engage with landscapes and gardens and farms, without having to fly the miles to see them.  A virtual Tokachi experience with no offsets required. Her photos have given me an opportunity to channel Jack Kerouac and most importantly they've given me the drive to build a garden for myself.

Image by Claire Takacs of Sarah Ryan's Hillandale garden, NSW.

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