Monday, 22 June 2009
There are two types of gardens that will always make me wistful. An English garden, planted with rhubarb, strawberries, gooseberries, apple trees, roses, pansies and daffodils, such as what I had when growing up. And scrambling French countryside gardens, places to hide and seek, such as where I stayed as a child during family holidays. And so there is so much that appeals to me about Heaven in Earth, which focuses on the beauty of both of these types of gardens, but with a particular Australian appeal. Jocelyn Van Hoven created Heaven in Earth with her husband Justin after realising it was hard to find good-quality gardening products that weren't mass-produced in China. Products are either sourced from Europe or hand made in Australia.
Which five words best describe you? Inquisitive, focused, giving, spirited, stubborn.
What was your first job and what path have you taken since then? I worked in a bank after high school to fund my first overseas trip. Since then, it has been varied from a artist model, hospitality worker during a zoology degree to finding horticulture as a path which enabled me to use my love of science along with my creative side.
What’s your proudest achievement? That's hard to pin down; I am proud of my family and our decision to leave the city. But I would have to include my two business, my first of garden maintenance and design in Sydney and that of Heaven in Earth, which is a constant source of discovery and a delightful challenge, during which my two sons have been born.
What’s been your best decision? To marry my husband who shares my love of all things natural and to be brave enough to give things a go.
Who inspires you? Other mothers with their own business, my husband for his joy, and my parents for their inquisitive and open minded nature.
What are you passionate about? Original thinking.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt? To love the detail in in life but don't dwell on the little things!!!
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Well I would rather watch the people of Astier de Villatte do their ceramics, observe Seraut do his pointilism, follow Ansel Adams through Yosemite, talk with Gabriel Garcia Marquez and talk with Karl Popper about the philosophy of science, spend time with my maternal grandmother and my stepfather's father and more time with my brothers who are both in different parts of the world.
What dream do you still want to fulfil? So many dreams... to travel with my family, to travel with just my husband again, to open a shop with it all (garden wares, vintage finds, plus bookshop and more), to expand my garden with drystone walls, reticulated streams, to compile a book of beauty, to draw again, be a freestyle stylist, oh my one could go on!
What are you reading? Zero by Charles Seife (a book on the origins and philosophy of the number 0).
Images courtesy of Heaven in Earth