Many contemporary botanical artists draw inspiration from botanical paintings and drawings completed hundreds of years ago.
The Getty Iris, the online magazine of the Getty Museum, has an article titled Botanical Art Inspired by Renaissance Illuminations. The article focuses on the art of Denise Walser-Kolar who paints in watercolour and gouache on vellum and who was inspired by the Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta - a 16th Calligraphic Manuscript inscribed by Georg Bocskay and illuminated by Joris Hoefnagel.
The book was devised by Georg Bocskay to demonstrate his technical mastery of various calligraphic scripts and writing styles. Fifteen years after his death, illuminations were added to the model book by the Flemish miniaturist and imperial court artist Joris Hoefnagel.
There are two copies of the Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta in existence and the one owned by the Getty is illuminated with botanical images.
You can read more about it and see images from the Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta (Model Book of Calligraphy) - the publication which inspired this art - on the the Getty Museum website.
You can also download
You can also see more of Hoefnagel's drawings of botanical and nature subjects on the website of the Fine Art Museums of San Francisco - which also has an excellent biography of his life and contribution to art.
Hoefnagel was known as
He was the last important Flemish manuscript illustrator and one of the earliest still-life artists.
Those who love botanical art have been known to acquire the odd piece (or dinner service!) of porcelain which includes botanical art.
I've just discovered that the Royal Collection Trust - that's the shop window for the British Monarchy - has developed a suite of porcelain bearing individual botanical designs.
It's called Chelsea Porcelain
A beautiful design incorporating all manner of colourful and intricate decorations including flowers, vegetables, insects, fruits, and berries. The pieces in this service are closely derived from the large collection of botanical porcelain acquired over a long period, beginning in 1947, by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.
Those who are interested in owning a piece can order it from the Royal Collection Trust Online Shop. It's not cheap but everything I've ever bought from the Royal Collection has been extremely well made and I'm sure this will be too.
The collection also complements the current exhibition in the Queens Gallery - Painted Paradise: the Art of the Garden (until October 11th 2015).
Bringing together paintings, botanical studies, drawings, books, manuscripts and decorative arts, the exhibition explores the changing character of the garden from the 16th to the early 20th century. It includes works by Leonardo da Vinci, Maria Sibylla Merian and Carl Fabergé, and some of the earliest and rarest surviving depictions of gardens and plants.
Leicestershire Society of Botanical Illustrators is now online with:
Plus they have an exhibition coming up - “A Medieval Cornucopia” at Leicester's Guildhall - of which more when I have the details. The Society has previously exhibited at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery, Kew Gardens, London in 2011
As yet they don't have a list of their members online on heir website but I'm sure this will come in time
The conditions of membership are as follows - and other local botanical art societies might want to make a note of the conditions with respect to continued membership and members allowed to exhibit.
Selection: Membership is by invitation only. The assessment process occurs twice a year and artists are invited to become members only after they have submitted six artworks for assessment which meet the required standard.
Continued Membership: It's very nice to see an art society making sure that its membership only comprises active members and not those who apply purely to get the signature status! Annual membership is dependent on attendance at a minimum of 10 weekly meetings during the year
Exhibiting members: Members are not allowed to exhibit with the Society until they have attended at least 20 meetings during the previous year. I think this is very sensible as , for a local botanical art society, this effectively limits the exhibiting members to those who can get to the venues used easily and means there's no scope for opting out on helping when it comes to providing help with the organisation of the exhibitions and/or stewarding!
If you are interested in joining please complete the contact form on the website.
The exhibition to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society opened to the public on Tuesday.
London's Secret Garden continues until 26th August at the Chelsea Physic Garden at 66 Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea. Admission is free with admission to the garden.
You can read my Review: 'London's Secret Garden' Exhibition at the Chelsea Physic Garden (on my main blog). It includes photographs of some of the 75 artworks by past and present members of the Florilegium Society.
Below is the panel explaining about the history of the Society - and what it has achieved in its first 20 years. May it go from strength to strength!
You can read more about Florilegia in the Art History Section and find out about the current Florilegium Societies around the World in the section about botanical art organisations.
This is about the three exhibitions about to close at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art at Kew Gardens - and the NEW exhibition which opens on 29th August 2015.
Nature's Bounty: paintings from the Shirley Sherwood Collection
The new exhibition Nature's Bounty: paintings from the Shirley Sherwood Collection will open on 29 August 2015 and continue until 31 January 2016. The Gallery is open every day 10am to 5.30pm except Mondays. From 25 October the exhibition will close at 3.45pm. The price of entry is included with the admission price to the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew.
Subject: Fruit and plants from around the world - including paintings of the development of fruit in stages which requires months of periodic observation, waiting for fruit to develop so that every stage can be illustrated.
Scope: Paintings from the Shirley Sherwood Collection plus items illustrating fruit, from Kew’s Library, Art and Archives collections.
Featuring botanical artwork by....
This time I'll be doing the review of the exhibition soon after it opens!
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Katherine Tyrrell writes about botanical art and artists and has followers all over the world.
© Katherine Tyrrell 2015-17
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