A new exhibit exploring natural history illustration from the 1500s to the 1800s opens Friday, September 12, at UT’s McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture. Some of the rare books on display are on loan from the University Libraries’ Special Collections. Special Collections items include works of zoological and botanical illustration, notably a 1665 imprint of the historic Micrographia, by Robert Hooke.
“Birds, Bugs, & Blooms: Natural History Illustration from the 1500s–1800s” will run through January 4, 2015, and explores over 300 years of the intersection of science and art in natural history illustration.
More than fifty rare books, prints, and objects are on view, highlighting how increasing access to books, travel, and technology, as well as the evolution of knowledge, changed the way in which illustrations were created and interpreted. From fantastical images of beasts in the 1500s, to extremely accurate depictions of plants and animals in the 1800s, the illustrations in the exhibit demonstrate the rapid advances of natural history during the print age.
Several exhibit-related programs are planned. Free family programming includes exhibit-related Family Fun Days on September 27 and November 1, and a Stroller Tour for parents, caregivers and young children on October 6.
Other programming includes a natural history illustration workshop, “Using Scratchboard to Create Lifelike Illustrations” on October 5, and lectures on natural history and illustration by Barney Lipscomb, Leonhardt Chair of Botany at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas, on October 22, and UT Professor of History Denise Phillips on November 6.
See the exhibit page for more programming details: http://tiny.utk.edu/birdsbugsblooms.
“Birds, Bugs, & Blooms” is curated by Catherine Shteynberg and Christine Dano Johnson. Lenders include Arader Galleries, Dr. Gordon Burghardt, the National Museum of Health and Medicine, and UT Special Collections. The exhibit is presented by Arader Galleries, W. Graham Arader III, UT Federal Credit Union, the Ready for the World Initiative, ARAMARK, Bennett Galleries, and the Ardath & Joel E. Rynning Museum Fund. Additional support is provided by Knox County, the City of Knoxville, and the Arts & Heritage Fund.
The McClung Museum is located at 1327 Circle Park Drive. Museum admission is free, and the museum’s hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Free two-hour museum parking passes are available from the parking information building at the entrance to Circle Park Drive on the weekdays. Free parking is available on Circle Park Drive on a first-come, first-served basis on weekends. Free public transportation to the museum is also available via the Knoxville Trolley Vol Line.
Additional parking information is available at http://mcclungmuseum.utk.edu/visit/parking.
For more information about the McClung Museum and its collections and exhibits, visit http://mcclungmuseum.utk.edu.