Fifteen large-scale color prints from the illustrated book The Temple of Flora (1812) reflect the true passion of English doctor John Robert Thornton: botany. The plants pictured are dramatically rendered and set against romantic landscapes—as opposed to the plain backgrounds that were typical of botanical images at the time. In honor of the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778), Thornton had hired eminent artists to produce the engravings, which later inspired American artist Jim Dine (b. 1935). Dine’s illustrated book from 1984 is featured alongside the prints.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.