If I include the varied and fascinating work of Sjoerd Buisman within the category of ‘creative collaborations’, it is with a keen sense of his affinity with scientists, and of his subtle borrowings from scientific experiment. He wrote revealingly in 1978 of his mode of presentation:

‘I present my work in a very dry, extremely systematic and almost scientific manner. The plants, often presented in pristine white boxes, are classified named and described. Some people might consider this form of presentation too objective and too detached, but the work process and the selection of the subjects are in themselves such emotional and subjective affairs that only a systematic and cool way of presentation can ensure that the specific process is communicated in a clear and comprehensive manner, and the final result is a balanced one.’



Buisman collaborates with

natural time, and as we

encounter them...


It might be observed that the collaborative strategies of some of the artists I have described in this section are in certain ways closely akin to the procedures of scientists, for what is modern scientific enquiry if it is not a working with nature to discover the hidden truths of determinacy, process and transformation? It might equally have been appropriate to enter Buisman’s work under the heading of ‘the array’. The truth is that these categories are porous, and there is much work in this book which might simultaneously fall into more than one of them.

Buisman’s work most characteristically consists of interventions in the growing process of plants and trees that will, as their consequences are manifested, illuminate some aspect of that process.

More particularly, >