Trees Become Works of Art at Huntington Library

Courtesy Huntington Library “Leiden’s 300-Year-Old Tulip Tree in Autumn,” a painting by Esmée Winkel, is among the artworks for this exhibit.
Courtesy Huntington Library
“Leiden’s 300-Year-Old Tulip Tree in Autumn,” a painting by Esmée Winkel, is among the artworks for this exhibit.

One of the planet’s most important and beautiful resources — its trees — will be spotlighted in a traveling exhibition of contemporary botanical artworks, on view through Aug. 27 at the Huntington Library.
“Out of the Woods: Celebrating Trees in Public Gardens” is organized by the New York Botanical Garden and the American Society of Botanical Artists. It is the third triennial exhibition.
“Out of the Woods” highlights the role public gardens and arboreta play in engaging visitors with trees and their ecological and utilitarian roles. It also underscores the conservation, research and scholarship being undertaken by these public institutions.
The juried show includes 43 artworks, selected from a field of more than 200 submissions, each one depicting a tree cultivated in a public collection in locations spanning five continents. Specimens from small county arboreta are displayed alongside those from some of the world’s most renowned botanical gardens, including the Huntington Library as well as its nearby neighbor, the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden in Arcadia.
Working in watercolor, oil, graphite, colored pencil and ink, these international artists have depicted everything from seedpods to bark to an entire forest floor.
“By bringing these subjects to life through their work, this extraordinary group of botanical artists creates new pathways for communicating the beauty and value of plants to contemporary life,” said James Folsom, the Telleen/Jorgensen director of the Botanical Gardens at the Huntington Library. “I can’t think of a more critical time than now to be hosting this show and talking about this topic.”

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