Many have turned to gardening to spend their lockdown days creatively. Ashil Antony, a native of Chittoor in Ernakulam, has adopted a unique method of turning nature and greenery into eye-catching art works. The young artist, who studied visual art at RLV College, has been working as an animation and graphic designer before he quit his job to become full time artist. He began growing money plants at the studio of the Wall Frames art gallery where he worked. Initially, he planted them in empty paint bottles. Now, his incredible nature art has made its way into the balcony of his house, the interiors and even the front yard.
Ashil loved tending to his garden even when he was busy with his work. He says his quest for unique varieties of plants and shrubs have earned him many new friends and also made him part of many groups that share similar interests. Now, there are around 300 varieties of plants in Ashil’s collection.
Ashil was struggling to balance his work and his love for gardening when the nationwide lockdown was announced. Besides tending to his favourite plants, Ashil now finds time to arrange them in interesting designs and patterns. Ashil has an impressive collection of air plants that aren’t commonly seen in Kerala. He also has many varieties of plants that belong to the family of anthurium.
Tillandsia Streptophylla, Tillandsia Capitata, Tillandsia Brachycaulos and Tillandsia Ionantha Curly Giant are some of the unique varieties of air plants in Ashil’s graden.
Ashil arranges these plants alongside his art works to increase its aesthetic appeal. What began as a hobby has now become a genuine passion for this youngster. Tending and caring for his beloved plants has become a vital part of Ashil’s life. Ashil says he has the whole hearted support of his parents AJ Antony and Mary Philomena. The youngster says that he is not ready to sit idle during the lockdown days as Ashil has already begun looking for new varieties of plants for his garden.