Treat for arty botanists

by Kent Caddick

Local residents, art lovers and amateur botanists are in for a treat over the coming weeks with the opening of a new exhibition at the Selwyn Gallery in Darfield.

Paintings and drawings of native plants from around the district will be on display and the until October 25.

The art works were created by members of the Botanical Art Society of New Zealand from 2010 to 2013, and were created to help celebrate the 150th birthday of the Christchurch Botanic Gardens.

Malvern Community Arts Council chair Philip Baldwin said this exhibit is part of a larger body of work called the ‘Canterbury Plains Florilegium’, an illustrated record of indigenous plants.

“In modern terms the word florilegium means a collection of botanically correct illustrations of plants, in this case from Riccarton Bush and the Canterbury Plains.

“Part of our interest in this exhibit is that botanical art can act as the interface between art and science,” Mr Baldwin said.

“It gives viewers an aesthetic experience and also educates them about the botanical subjects on display.”

The aim of the not-for-profit Botanical Art Society of New Zealand is to ‘foster and promote botanical art and to stimulate interest in plants, conservation, horticulture, and the natural environment.

The Selwyn Gallery will be open daily (except Mondays) from 10am to 4pm for the duration of the exhibition.