Esther Beaton


Ragged Red – Ltd Ed fine art print by Esther Beaton


Red eucalypt leaf, chewed by insects and dying. Central Coast, New South Wales

Supposedly eucalypts trees are evergreens – meaning they retain their leaves all year round. It may seem that way, but they actually lose their leaves one by one – a few here, more there. As it is time for a leaf to die, it stops pulling nourishment through the stem and stops producing chlorophyll. It starts to dry out, resulting in the rich autumn shades of orange, red and – very red! I love the simplicity of this picture. It’s been a popular one, achieving a prize too, probably because it is so iconic. Unmistakably Australian, it shows survival. Through a 100 insect attacks it hangs on – until it gently just lets go.  

Both the soft shapes and blue-green tones of the background make a perfect foil for the sharp redness and crisp outline of the leaf.

Weight 5 kg

Archival pigment on cotton rag


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