History . . .
A group of enthusiastic botanical artists met on 20th January 2016 and formed the Bermuda Society of Botanical Artists, a not-for-profit organization. One of our founding members, Marg Hammond, designed our logo which depicts the Bermuda cedar (Juniperus bermudiana), our beloved and endangered endemic tree.
Botanical art defined . . .
“This genre is an art/science combination in which both elements must be present to qualify for the definition “botanical art”. It’s a marriage between accuracy and aesthetics. “ – Margaret Best.
Botanical art is a two-dimensional art form embracing both scientific accuracy and aesthetics. Both features must be distinctly recognizable in each work of art regardless of the medium selected. Botanical accuracy pertains to structure, use of colour, proportion and perspective. The aesthetic component should portray the artist’s own individual style and expression with the inspiration drawn directly from an actual specimen and not exclusively from digital images. Each completed art piece requires the identification of the specific species depicted. All features of the plant shown are required to match the species named by the artist.
Contemporary botanical art emerged from a form of vital documentation and illustration in both pre-written language and pre-photographic eras to become a recognized genre providing both visual and educational enrichment.
Defined for a purpose . . .
Botanical art is specifically defined in order to:
- ensure that the centuries-old tradition of botanical art is preserved
- enable members of BSBA to inform the public of the genre and the reason for its existence
- provide guidelines for new or student-member artists
- ensure both the educational and aesthetic aspects of the genre are not eroded
- establish and maintain standards for members generally, and particularly for exhibitions
Out of respect for the rich history and tradition of the genre, botanical art should not include:
- insect, animal, or bird content.
- man-made objects such as vases, pots, walls, or tables such as used in still-life works
- full colour backgrounds or landscapes that distract from the role of the plant as the main focus of the artwork
- purely digital image sourcing