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Inspired by Plants

The Art and Science of the Campus Arboretum Florilegium

Inspired by Plants: The Art and Science of the Campus Arboretum Florilegium

flo·ri·le·gi·um / flôrəˈlējēəm: a collection of scientific illustrations documenting the plants in a special garden.

A collaboration of Special Collections and the University of Arizona Campus Arboretum, this exhibit features a collection of scientific illustrations documenting the plants of the Joseph Wood Krutch Garden, the University’s oldest garden, an inspiring model of a sustainable urban landscape.

Skillful scientific illustrators and artists from throughout the Southwestern United States created striking works that remind us of the lessons of the Krutch Garden, which are relevant for our times—inspiring connection with nature through the unique beauty of the Sonoran desert and promoting conservation and stewardship of plant diversity in our desert cities.

Despite advances in technology used to capture botanically significant details through photography and microscopy, scientific illustration retains great value as an effective educational resource simply because it encapsulates all important views and detail magnification in one small panel. Florilegia serve as important historical records and useful scientific tools to record local and regional species diversity in perpetuity.

These masterfully created original artworks are held at Special Collections. Additional materials from Special Collections relating to the historic Joseph Wood Krutch Garden are on display. Artists contributing to the exhibit include Pauline SavageChris BondanteJoyce PetersDiane Inman, and Karen Gengle.

Curation credits

Guest Curator: Tanya M. Quist, Director, University of Arizona Campus Arboretum

Student Curators: Syd Stoll, Student Assistant and Zoe Harrison, Graduate Assistant

Production: Fleur van der Woude, Preventive Conservator, Special Collections; and Andrea Ortega, Preservation Assistant, Special Collections

Illustration by Pauline Savage, Echinocereus fasciculatus, pink flower hedgehog, acrylic on paper, 2022, courtesy of University of Arizona Special Collections, Joseph Wood Krutch Garden Florilegium collection, MS 745.

February 13, 2023, 9:00 am to August 3, 2023, 4:00 pm