|The Art of Natural History
February 10-April 29, 2012
At the Museum in the John and Peggy Maximus Gallery
Artists and scientists have been inspired by the natural world for centuries. The desire to understand and classify plants and animals was prompted by the influx of species new to European naturalists during the Age of Discovery. As the sciences developed, illustrating species became an essential element of this process. Detailed images were published in significant numbers so that information could be shared. In an age when art and science had not yet diverged and documenting the visual world was still the artist's crucial role, these illustrations were not only beautiful but scientifically important.
The Maximus Gallery art collection shows how many of the greatest scientific illustrators saw the world in this visual record that spans 300 years.