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Hanging by a Thread II | 2020

Hanging by a Thread II | 2020

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Original artwork by Sharon Field.

Watercolour, graphite and gouache on paper, 38 x 32 cm, framed in black frame, 2020.

'I decided to give this little mushroom a black background to reflect its natural habitat beneath the leaf litter and soil.

There are about 144,000 known species of organisms of the kingdom Fungi, which includes yeasts, ruts, smuts, mildews, moulds and mushrooms.

Fungi were once classified as plants because they grow out of the soil and have rigid cell walls.  Now they have been given their own kingdom of equal rank with animals and plants and are more closely related to animals than to plants.  Fungi grow from the tips of filaments and they digest organic matter externally before absorbing it into their mycelia.  The rest of the organism (often 90% or more) is underground and consists of a network of microscopically thin “threads” which spread through the soil.'