Switzerland is known for its flourishing open meadows, with their abundant wildflowers and lush greens; so when Lindsay Buck moved there in 2010, she had a strong desire to preserve this natural beauty. Her plan, both practical and artistic, was a simple one: launch an online herbarium – a collection of preserved plant specimens that she would share via her blog and Instagram page. She called her project the freshly pressed, and it spans in both Switzerland and the United States.
“Moving to Switzerland in 2010 rekindled my admiration for the beauty and complexity of the natural world, which I first discovered as a child by wandering the woodlands and prairies of my native Minnesota,” wrote Buck on her website.
“As an adult, I pursued degrees in biology, fine arts, and environmental studies before entering the profession of landscape architecture. While fortunate to have a career that melds my interests in both the design and natural world, the minutiae of the meadows have become my meditation – a break from the bustle of daily life and a return back to the wonder that inspired me from such a young age.”
“In 2019 I brought the freshly pressed project back with me to Minnesota, where I continue to collect, press, and add to my herbarium collection,” she went on to say. “It has been an adventure in rediscovering the species from my childhood, which I now view with a new appreciation.”
Working intimately with her growing collection of pressed specimens, Buck says she came to realize the unique beauty in each plant. Soon, what began as a scientific exploration became an artistic endeavor. Through her online collection, she hopes to connect with others and inspire further exploration of the melding of art and nature.
“I am fascinated by botanical history- how we as humans have applied meaning and value to different plant species as a way to connect to our surroundings and how we can tap into this history as a motivation to preserve and protect our biodiversity nowadays,” she writes. “I believe that designers and scientists can both benefit from exploring across fields.”
But even laymen like us can enjoy her botanical collection.