The feature image for the Botanical Art and Artists website and Facebook Page for Summer 2021 is this image of Crinium Augustum [Queen Emma] by Mrs Priscilla Bury (1799 - 1872)
This post is about Mrs Bury and her very impressive book about hexandrian plants i.e. plants with six stamens called "A selection of hexandrian plants, belonging to the natural orders Amaryllidæ and Liliacæ, from drawings by Mrs. Edward Bury, Liverpool"
About Mrs Priscilla Bury (1799-1872)
Priscilla Susan Falkner was born in Liverpool. She was the daughter of a rich Liverpool merchant whose estate outside the city at Fairfields 'boasted a garden with many rare and exotic plants' (Tomasi).
As a young woman she was an enthusiastic botanist and flower painter and was particularly interested in lilies and allied flowers. She had no pretensions as to scientific knowledge and, in effect, was a very talented amateur.
By 1829, (age 30) she had produced a number of paintings of hexandrian plants, which she wished to publish.
In 1830, Falkner married Edward Bury F.R.S. (1794-1858), a wealthy and ingenious railway engineer and she had three sons - and her paintings were transcribed by Robert Havell into engravings. (Havel was also responsible for his engravings for John James Audubon).
Following the publication of Hexandrian Plants, Priscilla Bury continued to contribute illustrations to botanical works including
Between 1852 and 1860 the family lived at Hillsborough Hall near Sheffield and later moved to Croft Lodge, Ambleside in the Lake District. By 1866 she was living at Fairfield, Thornton Heath, Croydon. She died at Fairfield on 8 March 1872 of bronchitis and cerebral congestion.
About "A Selection of Hexandrian Plants"
Mrs Bury's place in botanical art history is due to her flower paintings which were published - as engravings - in A Selection of Hexandrian Plants, belonging to the Natural Orders Amaryllidae and Liliacae in London by Robert Havell the younger, [plates watermarked 1831-1834].
There were 79 subscribers to this book and hence this is now a rare book of some significance. A copy of her book was auctioned at Christies in 2001 and fetched £75,250. Wilfrid Blunt described it (in The Art of Botanical Illustration) as
"one of the most effective colour-plate folios of the period"
For me, I think her book is an excellent teaching aid in relation to those wanting to learn about composition. Note her technique - subsequently replicated by Pandora Sellars - of putting her light coloured blooms against the dark leaves of her hexaodrian plants so that they can be seen much more clearly.
All the good techniques are there in past paintings. You just need to study the past to learn a lot about what does and does not work in relation to telling the story of a plant within the context of botanical art and illustration.
How to see her book
You can see examples of the images from the book in various online collections of botanical images, namely:
There are copies of the book in the libraries of:
BAA Visitors so far....
since June 2015
Subscribe to BAA News
Blog posts are emailed to you when you SUBSCRIBE to "Botanical Art and Artists - News" by Email
Your email subscription to this blog is ONLY activated IF you verify the link you will receive. You can unsubscribe at any time
It will NOT be used for anything else and will NEVER be given to anybody else.
EVERY DAY FOLLOW News about botanical art + links to new BAA blog posts on Botanical Art and Artists on Facebook
© Katherine Tyrrell 2015-21
Unauthorised use or duplication of ANY material on this blog without written permission is strictly prohibited. Please also respect the copyright of all artists featured here.
What's your news?
This blog highlights news - in brief - about botanical art exhibitions around the world.
Use the Contact form to tell me about an exhibition and provide a summary of relevant information. If listing your event I will ask you for relevant images.
The Best Botanical Art Instruction Books
Tap the pic to check out my recommendations
The Best Books about Botanical Art History
Tap the pic to check out my recommendations
Workshops, Classes & Courses
Find out about botanical art workshops, classes courses offered by various organisations and artists in:
Read other Botanical Art Blogs
READ Blogs about botanical art and/or by botanical artists & illustrators
BAA News Archives
This page Botanical Art & Artists on my main blog has an archive of blog posts about past exhibitions of the Society of Botanical Art and Artists
News Blog about artists, awards, exhibitions etc.
Please send me .
- news to share
- info. about exhibitions
- any suggestions for what you'd like to see on this website
- Best Books about Botanical Art History
- History of Botanical Art
- Botanical Art Online
Contact me if you'd like to promote workshops and courses on this site.
This website is free to you but not for me! (See Affiliate Income below)
Cookies, Personal Data & Privacy tells you how this site relates to and impacts on you and your privacy - and your choices.
Product & company names may be trademarks of their respective owners
About Affiliate Income: This website has been created to share information not to make a profit. I am an Amazon Associate and earn from qualifying purchases (e.g. books from Amazon) which helps offset costs associated with maintaining this very large website.