Strawberries in a sink

This is a little painting of strawberries in a sink, but also a reflection on ageing and change. Watercolour and coloured pencil on paper – 31 x 23 cm


I noticed this old sink of so-called wild strawberries towards the end of the season. A number of things stood out: the graceful runners, the chips and crackle of the sink, and the leaves – still a rather violent green but beginning to colour.

Everything here is weathered. Ironically, it is only in its decrepitude that the sink, supposedly inanimate, comes to life. The crackle of the glaze reminds one of spiders’ webs, and the pits and scratches are like a lunar plain. The wild strawberry is colouring with the change of season, but it still puts out virile runners. One over-ripe fruit hangs over the edge of the sink. The sink shows subtle tints of reflected blue and pink. Close observation helps us to see fugitive colours that a mere glance will not reveal. But to no one who is familiar with Heraclitus will find this surprising, because “Nature loves to hide”.

One of the best things about art is that it can change according to need and mood. So, in one sense, this is a little painting of a sink and strawberries. In another sense, the piece is a reflection on ageing and change. And, of course, the ‘wild’ is contained. It’s up to you what you make of it.

You might also like these winter berries.