Awesome By Nature

Dia Herbaria Volveria

Volveria – Els van der Monde

Last Thursday I was at the opening of a show by the art group Tropisme in the Hortus Botanicus in Amsterdam, not far from where I live. The work by this group is made through new media, i.e. the state of the art scanners and other photographic examinators. The images are basically ‘just’ print-outs of the new technology. But still, they examine plants, the making of. They zoom in on the nature of nature… isn’t that the hardcore of all art? As in Nature Inspires Art? The way nature is made is fascinating, and if you look at some of these images, it leaves you in awe. Awesome, incredible.

Dia Herbaria Philondendron

Parts of the Philodendron bipinnatifidum can be found on the ground. Shrew. Turtles. Tarantula. – Arie van ‘t Riet

What you see is images of existing plants, animals and landscapes caught on camera by röntgen, microscope and hyperbolic lenses. Some are electro photogrammetrics. And I say ‘existing’ as you will doubt what you see. Apparently a birch carries pollen that look exactly like mines at sea, like you know them from a comic strip, and a slice of an ordinary wild flower looks like a vulva shaped sanctuary.

I love to look at ordinary things in a different way 🙂

Arteries of land - Margot van de Stolpe

Arteries of land – Margot van de Stolpe

The show is in the Palmhouse of the Hortus Botanicus Amsterdam, until September 15.

About Wilson

relentless hunter gatherer of soothing beauty, great and small
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3 Responses to Awesome By Nature

  1. Robin Noorda says:

    Dear Wilma,

    Thanks for your review of our exposition in your blog.
    If you don’t mind, I would like to correct a view minor details.
    First of all, the exhibit ends 15th of September (in stead of 23th).
    The 2nd picture is made by Arie van ‘t Riet in stead of Els van der Monde.

    Your statement: “just print outs of new technology” does not do right to the pieces of art.
    All museum quality dibond acrylic prints are limited editions artworks made by artists.
    New media and new technology are not specificly involved as such. E.g. camera obscura is one of the oldest and quite primitive of techniques. It is just a tiny hole in a box with some photographic film inside.
    Projected plant parts between glass slides is very basic as well as no camera is involved at all.
    Eventhough some scientific visualisation techniques are involved, like electron microscopy, but these are not new technologies or media. It is all about the perceptions of artists looking at plants in different and unexpected ways which are the core of the exhibition.

    Robin Noorda, curator of Photosynthesis

    Shedding new light on plants
    Exhibition for botanical gardens by art movement Tropism

    The world of plants as we have never seen it before. That is the essence of this exhibition. Artists belonging to art movement Tropism have been photographing the world of plants, using unusual, often scientific, visualisation techniques. The use of infrared, x-ray, pinhole and electron microscopy give the images a surrealistic and magical touch. The results are unique artistic visualisations that offer a surprising and spectacularly different view of plants.

  2. Dear Robin,

    thank you for your comment. I have updated the post with the right information. Also a big thank you for explaining a little further about the actual techniques used to make this fabulous art. As you can see I wrote ‘just’, with quotation marks, as I totally understand it NOT just a print out of some machine. What I was trying to say: the technology used to capture some of these spectacular images isn’t ‘regular’ in art, in that sense the Tropisme group is using ‘new’ media to make art, ‘unusual techniques’ as you call it.
    Knowing more about the techniques certainly doesn’t make the show less fascinating!

  3. Pingback: State Of The Art | iforinspirationblog

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