On the one hand “When They Were Wild: Recapturing California’s Wildflower Heritage,” is an exhibition about the native flowers of California. It draws on botanical illustrations from three collections — those of The Huntington, the Theodore Payne Foundation, and Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden — to “trace the journey of California’s plants from the flower fields to home gardens,” and everything about its content and design points, most pointedly, to the physical matter of flowers.
But on the other hand, is it really possible to juxtapose “Wild” and “California” in an exhibition title, or trace a journey from wildness to cultivation, without summoning the mythical “Wild West” frontier between savagery and civilization? Or bumping into the still-popular fiction that California was once a bountiful but unworked wilderness inhabited by “lazy savages”?
A really fantastic piece from KCET Artbound’s Janet Owen Driggs on “When They Were Wild,” on view through July 8 in the Boone Gallery.
Lyman Byxbe（American, 1886-1980）
Bear Lake 1937
(Source: lymanbyxbemyblog.wordpress.com, via dendroica)
Four Plums and Five Gooseberries
Still Life with Vegetables, detail
Bluebell at Hillditch Coppice on Flickr.
Karl Friedrich Schinkel - Morning
Ivan Shishkin: Birch Grove (1896) via Wikipaintings
Ivan Ivanovich Shishkin (Russian: Ива́н Ива́нович Ши́шкин; 25 January 1832 – 20 March 1898) was a Russian landscape painter closely associated with the Peredvizhniki movement.