For our April/May issue, Cultured tapped floral artist Brittany Asch of BRRCH to create a dreamy, flowered landscape for our cover with Petra Collins. We caught up with Asch to talk about about her roots and the next evolution.
What was the process of putting together the “Fantasy Garden” for our April/May cover shoot? I knew if I was going to build something around Petra, I wanted it to be something that was not exactly of this world, something that could almost serve as an aura of sorts but still be grounded. A garden nourishes, as does art and Petra has done the same for an entire generation. I wouldn’t have built the same for someone else- this is what she brought out in me. I adore her and her vision and I wanted to acknowledge all of her magic- so a fantasy garden seemed like the most fitting thing to do.
I wanted to make something I hadn’t seen before which makes mood boards irrelevant and sketching unnecessary as to imagine the piece through the lens of an alternate medium would have made things restrictive. I don’t like to premeditate things that much, it takes away from the possibilities. I shopped for the flowers that morning, curating a selection of materials that I felt would contribute to this world, and 2 hours later after some coffee, loading carts, prepping vases, removing thorns, unpacking boxes, freight elevators, spray paint and jerry-rigging, there was this little magic plot of land. The hardest part was dismantling it because then you truly realize how much reality differs.
When did you first begin using flowers as a medium? I started learning about working with flowers in 2011, I started BRRCH in 2013, and my brain completely changed in 2014, which is when I sort of started to think about and approach it all very differently than I had been taught.
Why did you decide to base BRRCH in New York? It’s where I was living at the time and the most familiar place to me. I wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere else.
Do you feel like you’ve created a unique space in the market of floral design? I’ve created a space where I can be myself and I am grateful every day for that. I don’t think about my work in a market sense or in terms of floral design. I am interested in things that are a bit off, attempts at breaking down class systems, social conditioning, and the boundaries of reality- the other side of “no.”
Which of your creative accomplishments gave you the most satisfaction? I am happy to complete projects. I’m not sure satisfaction is the right word for what I feel though. Once I see the pieces in real life, I then see the next 5 lives, and it sort of webs out into an extension of enough projects to keep me busy until I’m dead, so complete satisfaction might not be in the cards for me. But I’d rather be hungry than satisfied.