Description - Botanical Riches by Richard Aitken
Gardeners' Chronicle on botanical exploration, 1881- 'Of all the deadly occupations this is surely the most fatal.' Explorer Frank Kingdon Ward on his first sighting of the blue poppy in Tibet, 1924- 'Suddenly I looked and there, like a blue panel dropped from heaven - a stream of blue poppies dazzling as sapphires in the pale light.' Century after century, intrepid plant hunters and botanists travelled to exotic climes, collecting seeds and specimens. Searching for plants with economic value, medicinal benefits, or purely for lavish display, these botanical explorers carried their treasures home to their own lands. Botanical Riches is magnificently illustrated with some of the world's most glorious engraved, lithographed and hand-coloured botanical illustrations. From the earliest Renaissance herbals, to the more elaborate and beautiful volumes from the birth of printing, books celebrating plants from far-off lands brought with them a sense of wonder. Travel to ancient Sumer and discover where the first grains were domesticated for agriculture, through Egypt, the land of papyrus, to the Silk Road and the rice paddies of the secretive E
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(320mm x 241mm x 20mm)
The Miegunyah Press
Publisher: Melbourne University Press
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Author Biography - Richard Aitken
Richard Aitken is a Melbourne-based architect, historian, curator, and poeticist. He has been in private practice since 1978 and has prepared conservation plans for many of Australia's most significant historic gardens, including the botanic gardens of Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney, and Government Houses in Melbourne, Hobart, and Sydney. Richard's books include The Oxford Companion to Australian Gardens (2002), Gardenesque (2004), Botanical Riches (2006), Seeds of Change (2006), and The Garden of Ideas (2010). He has also contributed chapters to The Art of the Collection (2007), Reframing Darwin- evolution and art in Australia (2009), and Capturing Flora- 300 years of Australian botanical art (2012). In 2006 Richard was awarded honorary life membership of the National Trust of Australia for his advocacy role in the identification and conservation of significant gardens and designed landscapes. He is currently co-editor of Australian Garden History, the quarterly journal of the Australian Garden History Society.