RachelDein

Rachel Dein – Botanical Casts in Plaster and Concrete

London, United Kingdom
| 2,971 Sales | 5 out of 5 stars 5 out of 5 stars

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Announcement    Welcome to my 2022 shop!

Next week I'll be selling my work at Chelsea Flower Show. I've made a variety of new pieces for the Show some of which will also be available on the shop in a few weeks time. Please take a look at Instagram where there will be updated photos of the new pieces.


In January 2022 I started to cast plants for Nunnington Hall. This is a magnificent National Trust house and garden in North Yorkshire. In Spring 2023 there will be a grand exhibition of all the work (yet to be made!).

For a recent exhibition 'Making Paradise' at the Aga Khan Centre in Kings Cross, I had made a collection of casts that use the smallest of plants found growing wild on the roadside. They are thought of as weeds, so are usually overlooked. I also made pieces that celebrate the world of herbs and edible leaves - plants that are not usually portrayed in art, but are often mentioned in religious texts.
I want to capture the beauty of these plants, showing the wonder of Nature through the tinniest of details: the leaf, its stem, mid-rib, veins and curved edging.
My work is a continuation of the old tradition of nature printing, the technique of using the surface of a natural object to make a print. Leonardo da Vinci described a process in his Codice Atlantico of 1508, illustrating with a singular print of a sage leaf. Early botanists used nature printing to record the plants they collected and to share information about new discoveries in faraway places.
The exhibition has finished and some of these pieces are now for sale here on my Etsy shop

In 2019 I had a solo exhibition at Hidcote Manor Gardens, this was the result of a year-long collaboration. I worked with the gardeners to collect specimens of plants and flowers that best show cased each season. Some of the small pieces I made for Hidcote Manor Gardens are now available on my Etsy shop.

I'm proud to be part of the great achievement made by Hide. The restaurant opened in April 2018 and won a Michelin star and 'Best Restaurant' award that year 2018. Since then it has been awarded the best design by the Restaurant and Design awards. Please take a look at my website to see photos of the work I produced for Hide, 85 Piccadilly.

In 2017 I was commissioned by the Chinese fashion designer Huishan Zhang. His flagship store was designed by Fran Hickman, who chose my work to line the walls of the shop. Please take a look at the beautiful shop at 5B Mount St, Mayfair, London W1K 3NE.

In May 2017 I was invited to make work to decorate Raymond Blanc's restaurant 'Jardin Blanc' at RHS Chelsea. I made a collection of casts using the herbs and vegetables from his kitchen garden at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons. Some of the pieces have been sold, but you'll see a few still available on my Etsy Shop.
I'm included in the book by the New York based photographer Ngoc Minh Ngo titled 'In Bloom: Creating and Living with Flowers' which was published last Autumn. It documents artists and designers who work with flowers and plants.
The piece I made for the Chelsea Physic Garden using their medicinal plants is now available on my Etsy shop..

Please follow me on Instagram to see my latest work: @RachelDein

Announcement

Last updated on May 20, 2022

Welcome to my 2022 shop!

Next week I'll be selling my work at Chelsea Flower Show. I've made a variety of new pieces for the Show some of which will also be available on the shop in a few weeks time. Please take a look at Instagram where there will be updated photos of the new pieces.


In January 2022 I started to cast plants for Nunnington Hall. This is a magnificent National Trust house and garden in North Yorkshire. In Spring 2023 there will be a grand exhibition of all the work (yet to be made!).

For a recent exhibition 'Making Paradise' at the Aga Khan Centre in Kings Cross, I had made a collection of casts that use the smallest of plants found growing wild on the roadside. They are thought of as weeds, so are usually overlooked. I also made pieces that celebrate the world of herbs and edible leaves - plants that are not usually portrayed in art, but are often mentioned in religious texts.
I want to capture the beauty of these plants, showing the wonder of Nature through the tinniest of details: the leaf, its stem, mid-rib, veins and curved edging.
My work is a continuation of the old tradition of nature printing, the technique of using the surface of a natural object to make a print. Leonardo da Vinci described a process in his Codice Atlantico of 1508, illustrating with a singular print of a sage leaf. Early botanists used nature printing to record the plants they collected and to share information about new discoveries in faraway places.
The exhibition has finished and some of these pieces are now for sale here on my Etsy shop

In 2019 I had a solo exhibition at Hidcote Manor Gardens, this was the result of a year-long collaboration. I worked with the gardeners to collect specimens of plants and flowers that best show cased each season. Some of the small pieces I made for Hidcote Manor Gardens are now available on my Etsy shop.

I'm proud to be part of the great achievement made by Hide. The restaurant opened in April 2018 and won a Michelin star and 'Best Restaurant' award that year 2018. Since then it has been awarded the best design by the Restaurant and Design awards. Please take a look at my website to see photos of the work I produced for Hide, 85 Piccadilly.

In 2017 I was commissioned by the Chinese fashion designer Huishan Zhang. His flagship store was designed by Fran Hickman, who chose my work to line the walls of the shop. Please take a look at the beautiful shop at 5B Mount St, Mayfair, London W1K 3NE.

In May 2017 I was invited to make work to decorate Raymond Blanc's restaurant 'Jardin Blanc' at RHS Chelsea. I made a collection of casts using the herbs and vegetables from his kitchen garden at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons. Some of the pieces have been sold, but you'll see a few still available on my Etsy Shop.
I'm included in the book by the New York based photographer Ngoc Minh Ngo titled 'In Bloom: Creating and Living with Flowers' which was published last Autumn. It documents artists and designers who work with flowers and plants.
The piece I made for the Chelsea Physic Garden using their medicinal plants is now available on my Etsy shop..

Please follow me on Instagram to see my latest work: @RachelDein

Items

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Rose

Rose

$69.98

Only 1 left

Peas

Peas

$69.98

Only 1 left

Honesty

Honesty

$69.98

Parsley

Parsley

$69.98

Sage

Sage

$69.98

Only 1 left

Rosemary

Rosemary

$69.98

Geum

Geum

$69.98

Only 1 left

Grasses

Grasses

$69.98

Cow Parsley

Cow Parsley

$69.98

Ferns from Fife

Ferns from Fife

$95.43

Ferns from Fife

Ferns from Fife

$95.43

Cyclamens

Cyclamens

$95.43

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Rachel Dein

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Rachel Dein

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About RachelDein

Sales 2,971
On Etsy since 2013

“I enjoy the magic of plaster casting to create fossils from everyday life — whether it’s a shell found on holiday or your grandmother's lace.

Rachel Dein’s method of plaster casting captures everyday objects in a unique and delicate way. She makes impressions in wet clay, and then pours plaster directly over it. The clay captures the most intricate details, subtly colouring the plaster as it sets. Each clay mould can only be used once, making every piece unique. Casts are then finished and refined by hand, some casts are then painted.

Rachel studied Fine Art at Middlesex University, followed by a propmaking apprenticeship at the English National Opera.

She has worked as a propmaker for…

The Royal Opera House
English National Opera
The Globe Theatre
West End Theatres
London Transport Museum
Selfridges Christmas windows

Rothschild Villa, Corfu
Artist Gavin Turk

Exhibitions

The Cambridge Darkroom Gallery
Ben Uri Gallery
Raymond’s Revue Bar
St Pancras Chambers
Garden Suburb Gallery



“Sometimes literal recordings of life are the most elegant and honest of all depictions….which is not to say that the art and craft of embellishment is inferior (or worse, irrelevant) because it’s not. It’s why Rachel Dein’s minimal plaster casts of mundane objects are so charming. Dresses, grasses, flowers – all reflected in relief – take on a preciousness found in old lockets, holding sepia toned photos or locks of hair. These items are not spectacular by any means, but are meaningful. And meaning, by the way is something you simply can’t fake.” ‘Life Cast’, Furniturea, October 2012

“About a year ago I had been in to Moyses Stevens, the very elegant long-established flower shop that had recently opened a branch at the bottom of our road. I wanted to buy the same type of flowers that I’d had in my wedding bouquet 10 years earlier.

At the counter I told the manager that I was an artist, and I planned to cast the flowers. She was intrigued, and asked if I could come in once I’d made the tile, to show her senior manager. Once completed, I went back with the tile, and mentioned that I’d love to be able to cast the bouquets for brides. They both said there had been many times when brides-to-be had asked about preserving their wedding bouquet. Since then, largely through word of mouth, I’ve been commissioned to make wedding flower tiles.

When I was at art college I came across this very basic form of reproduction (casting) when doing a class in glass blowing. We were told to press shapes into wet sand into which we then poured the molten glass. I went back to our college studio and started experimenting with pressing things into clay and then pouring plaster onto the clay to make pieces of sculpture. I was amazed and fascinated at the detail achieved yet the simplicity of the process. After college I rented a space in Spitalfields Market for a few months to carry on making artwork, and then I was lucky enough to get a prop making apprenticeship at the English National Opera. This was the beginning of my prop making career, which I loved, and it developed my knowledge of casting, mould making and other techniques.

When my youngest child started school, having turned our loft in North London into a studio, I began to make small tiles from home and established Tactile Studio. The local church put a call out for creative people in the area to show their work. A gallery saw my tiles there, and invited me to exhibit with them. That Summer I’d taken a stall at London’s Dandy Lion Market where I met a lady who bought a small tile. She commissioned me to make four large tiles using the favourite things that she and her husband and their children had chosen.

Since then, I’ve worked to various commissions, and I’ve been making new pieces, experimenting with different compositions of plants and flowers, and different combinations of plaster and concrete.”

Rachel Dein, 2013

Shop members

  • Rachel

    Artist

    After studying Fine Art at Middlesex University I worked as a prop maker. I’ve been showing my work at RHS Chelsea Flower Show since 2014.

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