Kelley Anderson, founder and the artist behind Art Botanica, creates her art works with moss. Her work has been seen around the globe including installations in Dubai, Australia, Europe, and India.
She and her fiance Gavin Brodin, known for his luxury interior design firm Brodin Design Build, collaborated to launch Beauty and the Brit, which offers stories on art and design, travel, dining, and lifestyle including parenting and relationship tips.
We emailed Kelley Anderson a few questions about working with moss and her other endeavors.
What prompted you to work with moss the first time?
On a trip to Paris I stumbled upon an entire 4 story building that was engulfed with colorful plants and I was in love. This was a creation of Patrick Blanc, a artist who specializes in living walls. When I arrived home I set out to create a living wall alternative that is just as lush, dynamic and beautiful, but without the care and maintenance. I discovered a method of persevering moss using glycerine that kept it soft and vibrant for years and years, and started arranging it to create moss “living” walls that weren’t actually still living, but look very much alive.
Some of your projects, like the 75-square foot wall at Bellwether, are quite large. Is your moss sustainably sourced? Where does someone get that much moss? What is the process?
I always source my moss from US moss farms, based in Kentucky and Florida. They actually do farm moss these days! The preservation process involves soaking the moss in a glycerine bath. The leaves of the moss take up the glycerine, and displace the water, essentially preserving the freshness of the moss indefinitely.
You and your fiance, Gavin Brodin, have a lifestyle site cleverly called Beauty and the Brit. I presume you’re the beauty and he’s the Brit, but please tell us about the site. What can readers expect?
Hahahaha, although at times people would say Gavin is beautiful as well. Beauty and The Brit is a blog of our unique life together. We all have journeys that get us along the way until you’re united with your person. My person just happens to have traveled a windy road like mine. So we have made it a point to share our relationship and life with the world by inviting people into the life we created. We have a beautiful blended family, made of 3 boys, 3 dogs, 3 cats and lots of character. We’re both entrepreneurs and share a love of nature and travel. We are inspired by the customs, people and way of living around the world and having found each other later in life, we hope that others can take away the life we thought worth designing. On this blog you’ll find info on all the hidden gems we discover in our travels, great recipes we recreate from our favorite restaurants (we are avid foodies), heartwarming stories of our family time together, and also guidance on how to create your own “designed life” through mindfulness and other daily practices.
What do you think of NFTs as a trend in the art world? It seems your art is the antithesis of an NFT or do you see a way to create digital art that fits your work?
I am very interested in the development of NFTs, and the expansion of art in the digital space. Although my work is very different from digital art because you can touch it, feel it (energetically speaking) and smell it (it connects people to nature), I do think about how we continue to create connection between people and connection between people and nature, which I believe is essential. Maybe there is a possibility to create a super realistic digital nature immersion experience or other ways to simulate that connection in a very real and natural way? That would be my hope.
Do you have advice for other artists looking to be entrepreneurs and making their art a full time business?
Follow your heart and do what makes you feel good, follow your inspiration. I am a true believer in the power or your intentions, and utilizing your heart-led intuition to find your path. Anything is possible, and if you love creating it, then there is room in this world for your creations. When you stay open, opportunities to grow and expand, on a personal level and on a business level, will present themselves. You have to believe in yourself 100%.
Anything else you want our readers to know about you or your company?
My business is an extension of my self expression, so it is always changing and expanding. I allow myself to go beyond and try new things including designing and building a Burning Man art installation Fraktel in 2019, and also creating a monumental (aka large scale) sculpture business called Alexander Nicole with my fiance, Gavin Brodin.