It takes a gifted artist to become a great teacher and those who dare to teach never cease to learn.

Monday, December 31, 2007

An Untapped Pharmacopeia

There are many reasons to conserve our rainforests; they are the “lungs of the world” and storehouses of incredible biological diversity.
Less than one percent of tropical plant species have been assessed for modern-day medical applications. From just that one percent, we have developed drugs to treat cancer, HIV, hormonal imbalances, muscle spasms, indigestion and many other afflictions.
Please visit the interpretive trail in the Boettcher Memorial Tropical Conservatory (Denver Botanic Gardens). It highlights tropical plants in our collection that have proven medicinal value to humans.
In its series Drawing on Tradition Botanical Illustration Program offers a watercolor/graphite class featuring Medicinal plants and Elizabeth Blackwell. While learning new/old methods of botanical illustration, the students will also explore a piece the Botanical illustration history, Medical use of common and tropical plants and E. Blackwells herbal.
This fascinating class starts on January 7th, registration and further information, please click here.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas!!!

(Rudolf Koivu (1890-1946)
Wishing you all the very best for the Holiday Season.
If you are still trying to find the perfect gift to someone special, please remember the BI classes, they are really perfect gifts. (January required courses and electives. We do also have two introductory courses in January. The whole year schedule is available here).
You migh like to see the Santa Claus’ village or write a last minute letter to him. You can also see Santa’s webcam.
You knew that he lives in Finland.
Today, Finland is one of the few countries where kids actually see Father Christmas in the act of delivering the presents and probably the only country where the Santa really does ask the children if they behaved during the year.

(Rudolf Koivu (1890-1946)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Last chance ....

(Marjorie Leggitt)
Friday, December 21, 6-9 p.m. Miniature Sale in the Gardens' Lobby - last chance to get them in 2007. All of the paintings are donated by teachers and students. FREE GIFT WRAPPING!
This is our yearly fundraiser and the equipment we buy helps us offer first-rate education for the students in our program. This year the program is raising funds for drafting tables and adjustable chairs for classroom C. Tell at the gate that you are there for the miniatures and you get in free.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

BI course materials

Materials lists for all the BI classes can be found here. There is also a link on this page, in the right sidebar just underneath the course descriptions. You can find the right list by looking at the course number (a short description is in parenthesis).
Kozo Fine Art materials (10 E. Ellsworth Ave, Denver) has a 20% discount for Botanical Illustration Program participants with proof of registration. Bring your registration confirmation letter from the Botanic Gardens.

Index Seminum

(Index Seminum catalog covers: 1. Desert Legum Program, Tucson AZ ; 2. Parco Nazionale della Majella, Abruzzo, Italy)

The idea of a plant and seed exchange was formulated in 1683 when John Watts, the Director of The Chelsea Physic Garden visited the Leiden University Botanic Garden taking plants and seeds with him. The Chelsea Physic Garden was founded in 1673 by the Society of Apothecaries.
The Chelsea Physic Garden seed list (Index Seminum) as we know it now was first produced in 1901 when the City Parochial Foundation took over the management of the Garden. In 1983 the Garden was placed in the care of a group of trustees under the Chairmanship of Dr. David Jamison, and the Society of Apothecaries has since kindly agreed to finance the seed list.
The exchanges of plant material have continued until the present day, enabling Botanic Gardens all over the world to introduce new plants to their countries and to maintain interesting and diverse collections within their grounds.
The seed exchange now operates between the Chelsea Physic Garden and approximately 368 other Botanic Gardens and universities in 37 different countries.
The Botanical Illustration Program has got a unique request to produce the cover illustration for the Denver Botanic Gardens’ Index Seminum 2008. DBG’ list for 2008 includes 78 different species. Please see #08W BI 380.
This is an evening’s class and should attract many.
NOTE: Material from this class is also going to be used in the Denver Botanic Gardens’ Research Department Celebrating Wildflowers Coloring Book 2008.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Miniatures and Lights

Thursday, December 13, 6-9 p.m. Miniature Sale in the Gardens' Lobby. All of the paintings are donated by teachers and students. FREE GIFT WRAPPING!
This is our yearly fundraiser and the equipment we buy helps us offer first-rate education for the students in our program. This year the program is raising funds for drafting tables and adjustable chairs for classroom C. Tell on the gate that you came for the miniatures and you get in free.

AAM Meeting in Denver 2008

The annual American Association of Museums meeting is in Denver April 27 – May 1, 2008. The website for volunteers was launched yesterday. Please consider and sign up! WHY sign up? When you volunteer one four hour shift, you will earn a voucher which is valid toward a complimentary one-day registration to the AAM Annual Meeting and MuseumExpo! There are many, many jobs that need to be done, many of them before or after the meeting starts.
For the meeting schedule and program please click

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Registration starts on Monday December 10, 9 a.m.

(Barbara Piascik (2007 BI-graduate): Papaver orientalis, colored pencil, 2007)

Registration beginns tomorrow, Monday December 10th. The on-line registration starts 9 a.m. - You can registrer by phone from midnight Monday, December 10th (720-865-3580) and leave a message with all the information needed for registration (course number, your name and address as well as the payment information). We do encourage you to register on-line, though.
NOTE: You cannot register to Open Studio on line - You will register for Open Studio in the classroom as walk-in.
Happy Registration!
Remember Miniatures are sold December 13th (and 21st), 6-9 p.m. in Denver Botanic Gardens' Lobby - FREE Gift wrapping!!!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

America's Lost Landscape with CONPS

This award winning film tells the rich and complex story of one of the most astonishing alterations of nature in human history. Prior to Euro-American settlement in the 1820s, one of the major landscape features of North America was 240 million acres of tall grass prairie. But between 1830 and 1900 -- in the span of a single lifetime -- the prairie was steadily transformed to farmland. This drastic change in the landscape brought about an enormous social change for Native Americans. In an equally short time their cultural imprint was reduced in essence to a handful of place-names appearing on maps. The extraordinary cinematography of prairie remnants, original score and archival images are all delicately interwoven to create a powerful and moving viewing experience about the natural and cultural history of America. Amongst those interviewed are writer Dayton Duncan, Wes Jackson of The Land Institute, biologist Laura Jackson, linguist Jerome Kills Small, historian Anton Treuer, landscape historian Lance Foster, writer Richard Manning, and Nina Leopold Bailey and Carol Leopold -- two of Aldo Leopold's children.
Don't miss this month's Boulder Colorado Native Plant Society meeting--it's Movie Night! Pizza and popcorn will be served (bring your own reusable plate/bowl/cup)
Thursday, December 13th at 7pm, at City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks Offices at 66 South Cherryvale Rd.

If you missed the Miniatures...

If you missed the Miniature Show and SALE December 4 and 5th, you still have a change before the holidays: December 13th and 21st, 6-9 p.m. in Denver Botanic Gardens' Lobby. Please take your friend and visit, you might find something unique. We are fundraising for drafting tables and adjustable chairs for our classroom C. The BI program needs to get new furniture!
Tell at the gate that you are there for the miniatures and you get in free. Take the opportunity and see the Blossoms of Light at the same time.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Belated Congratulations to Jan Boyd-Haring!

Earlier this fall ASBA awarded Jan a grant of $1000 to research and record the wildflowers of the South Park area of Colorado. She will produce an illustrated brochure for tourists, locals, and any Colorado wildflower enthusiasts. She will also receive funds to attend the 2008 ASBA Annual Meeting in Pasadena, Ca to present her project.
Hooray for Jan – we are so happy for you!
Jan graduated from the BI program 2006.
(The image does not have anything to do with the project - Jan's watercolor painting of the orchid Phalaenopsis 'Ching Ann Princess' is hanging in the Alumni show at Denver Botanic Gardens).

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Congratulations Irma!

Irma Sturgell was the lucky winner for one free BI class or $183 towards tuition within the BI-Program. Every time you register to a BI class at Denver Botanic Gardens, you will automatically enter in a drawing. There will be one drawing / year.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Thank You Annie Reiser!

Without Annie Reiser's devotion the NOAA poster would not have been realized.
We do have a very limited edition of the poster, if you like to get one ($7), please contact us.

NOTE: This site and the links have been all updated to reflect the new course catalog for January - June 2008.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Typos or Elves?

Two typos found in the new catalog:
Page 2: Mark A. Klingler workshop fee should read: $183 for member and $220 for non-member.
Page 12: Urban Nature: Indoor Plants in Watercolor: dates should read Wed., Feb 13, 20, 27, March 5 and 12.

My vote goes for the elves!

Please correct your printout - the pdf is now revised.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Winter - Spring Course Catalog -ENJOY

( Maria Sibylla Merian: Metamorphosis - Insectorum Surinamensium, 1705)
The new course catalog is out! Registration starts on December 10th for all classes. You can select between 19 required courses, 2 guest workshops and 37 elective courses. Please note the new format for the Open studio.

Cafe Botanique, November 15 - Morrison Center

In May 2007, Renée and Jon Zahourek were guests at the Royal Academy's Linnean Society during the presentation of a historic book on Botany published by that Society and the Natural History Museum, Order Out of Chaos. They met Dr. Charilie Jarvis, primary author of what may be the most significant work on Botany in the last century. At Café Botanique, the Zahoureks will show pictures of the Royal Academy and Linnean Society's publicity about the book and discuss its importance to all of us.

In 2005, Renée and Jon Zahourek founded first Anatomy in Clay Centers, Inc. classrooms in Boulder, CO. In 2006, they began development of an AiCCenter in London, teaching comparative human & horse anatomy classes at Museum of Natural History in London. In 2006, they also founded the Whitman-Zahourek Foundation, a non-profit whose mission is to make anatomy study core curriculum, from grade school to graduate school and beyond as life-long learning. They have also authored an innovative means of anatomy study now called Anatomy in Clay.™

Denver Botanic Gardens – Morrison Center 6:30 – 8 p.m.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


( Pears and Plums by Carol Till, a 2005 graduate)
Please stop by Gates Garden Court at Denver Botanic Gardens. BI graduates from 2000-2006 are exhibiting in this show (November-December 2007).

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Celebrating Science

On Friday, November 9, 2007, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Boulder will celebrate and commemorate NOAA science, from its beginnings in the early explorations of our hemisphere, through its evolution as a preeminent science agency, and forward to its future role in the understanding and prediction of the Earth system.

Denver Botanic Gardens’ Botanical Art and Illustration Program has contributed to some of the educational and outreach compounds prepared for the Boulder celebration.
Noaa is inviting us to celebrate, for more detailed information please click

Friday, October 26, 2007

Welcher aber ...

Whoever ... proves his point and demonstrates the prime truth geometrically should be believed by all the world (Albrect Dürer).
Albrech Dürer’s (1471 – 1528) ‘Das Grosse Rasenstück’ illustrates an ecologically accurate slice of a May meadow in Franconia. Dürer was supremely gifted and versatile German artist of the Renaissance era. He was engraver, printmaker, writes but also a painter. He introduced a new subject for the artist: Even the simplest detail in the nature is worth painting and nature should be studied for its own sake. Albrech Dürer was also a respected geometrician. Dürer's shell curve was presented in his work Instruction in measurement with compasses and straight edge (1525).
Botanical Art and Illustration Program offers a course in the series of “Drawing on Tradition: Naturalist Albrecht Dürer".

“His lectures were the finest ever heard…”

(Church, A.H. Types of floral mechanisms, Oxford 1908)

… and his theories and flower studies were revolutionary.
He was ‘a self-sacrificing, devoted, kind-hearted teacher, and as one of the ablest and most original botanists of our time’ (Tansley, 1939).
While studying Maud Purdy’s illustrations I inevitably think about Arthur Harry Church (1865-1937).
Arthur Harry Church primary interest was in the evolutionary origin and was painstaking in his analysis of floral structure and phyllotaxis and taught botany at Oxford, U.K. for 35 years. His revolutionary drawings are considered some of the finest botanical illustrations of the twentieth century. His mastery of microtechnique resulted to clarity and razor-sharp edge to the many cross-sections and diagrams of flowers that he produced to accompany his elegant studies. The illustrations of Ferdinand Bauer influenced him a great deal.
Botanical Art and Illustration Program offers a weekend workshop (November 2-4, 2007) in the series of “Drawing on Tradition: Story of the Origin: Arthur Henry Church flower studies” .

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Michael Wilcox products in KOZO

Kozo will be the only retail store to have Michael Wilcox products.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

If you are visiting New York

Ann A. Fleming's drawing is included in the 10th Annual International Juried Exhibition of the ASBA/ Horticultural Society of New York. Ann is DBG' BI certificate recipient from 2003.
The Royal Horticultural Societies gallery hours are from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and the exhibit is up until November 16, 2008 .

Also while you are in New York please visit the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

Drawing from life exhibit at BBG features the work of 14 woman artists who have painted plants at Brookland Botanic Garden during the past 90 years. The exhibit is very much focusing in the works of Maud H. Purdy
Maud Purdy was Brooklyn Botanic Garden's staff artist from 1913 to 1944. Among Purdy's most original and visually arresting works are 24 gouache paintings on black board. Purdy also produced 40 paintings of iris, several of which were exhibited at the 1933 Chicago World's Fair, and pen-and-ink illustrations of plants collected during the 1930 Astor expedition to the Galápagos (not all the iris paintings are exhibited)
Brooklyn Botanic Garden's goal is to digitize 235 of Purdy's paintings, illustrations, and sketches and to rescue the artist's original, often daring work from obscurity and make it available for study and appreciation by a public almost entirely unacquainted with it.

Just absolutely stunning – the exhibit will be up for viewing until November 11.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Discounted Materials for BI students

KOZO Fine Art Materials has agreed to give a discount of 20% on all regular priced items to BI students with proof of current registration and for instructors in the program. KOZO have, except all the ‘normal’ material also Michael Wilcox colors and special items like pointed tweezers, magnifying glasses etc. KOZO is located at 10 E Ellsworth Avenue, Denver, CO 80209 (303-733 2730).

Cafe Botanique, October 18

A Century of Crust Busting on the Colorado Plateau
By Nichole Barger, Ph.D., University of Colorado, Boulder, CO

Biological soil crusts are assemblages of lichens, fungi, cyanobacteria and mosses that colonize soil surfaces in arid land ecosystems. In those ecosystems where vascular plant cover is sparse, biological soil crusts may make up to 70% of the living ground cover and play an important role in nutrient cycling and stabilization of soil surfaces. Over the last century, biological soil crust communities in the western US have been disturbed by intensive land use practices such as livestock grazing and recreational use of public lands. In this talk, I will discuss my work on biological soil crusts communities on the Colorado Plateau and discuss the need for conservation of these unique micophytic soil communities.

Nichole Barger is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado. Nichole’s current research mission is to better understand the impacts of changing climate and land use on plant communities and soil resources in arid lands ecosystems; research that crosses the boundaries of community, ecosystem and landscape ecology.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Denver Botanic Gardens – Morrison Center6:30 – 8 p.m.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Last 5 weeks of classes

The last set of BI classes for 2007 is starting soon. Please pay special attention to the evening selection. We can only offer evening classes Monday though Thursday during the winter time and the rotation is much slower than that for the day time courses. This time we offer three required and one elective during the evening slot compared to the three required and seven electives during the day time. We do offer two weekend classes in Fort Collins and one in Denver.
And once again: Unfortunately there is conflicting information regarding the Color Mixing for Artists class. The class (#07C BI210) will be offered on Wednesday October 24, 31, November 7, 14, and 28, 6-9 p.m. DBG regret the typo.
Remember the Holiday Miniature Sale and Show - The art drop off deadline is approaching fast (November 12). You can print your entry form here, please return it in the wooden box in the classroom C or leave it with your instructor. This year we are fundraising for new drafting tables and chairs in the Classroom C.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Ann Swan

During the week of October 8 – 12 we will offer Colored Pencil Guest Workshop by Ann Swan in classroom C. You can still register on-line ,or call to register (720-865-3680). There are NO regular classes in next week.

Project InSect artwork has been taken down and the huge insect paintings have left Denver Botanic Gardens. The art in Gates Garden Court is re-organized and you can see BI-student master pieces on all the walls.

NOTE: Unfortunately there is conflicting information regarding the Color Mixing for Artists class. The class (#07C BI210) will be offered on Wednesday October 24, 31, November 7, 14, and 28, 6-9 p.m. DBG regret the typo.

(Arum Lily by Ann Swan)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Cafe Botanique, October 4

History of Heritage Roses – Fairmount Cemetery
By Stephen Scanniello

Found roses are an important ingredient in the palette of rose lore and garden history. Their names, easily identified by double quotation marks to distinguish them from known varieties, fill pages of rose nursery catalogs. At times the temporary names given to found roses (also referred to by some as mystery roses) end up being the permanent name, for the original identity may be lost, forever. Several of these found roses are in Denver's Fairmount Cemetery, provenance of "Fairmount American Pillar".
In the 20th century, as the hybrid tea and other modern rose groups became popular, many of the old hybrids fell to the wayside. Due to the efforts of the members of the Heritage Rose Foundation and rose preservationists (most notably the Texas Rose Rustlers and the Heritage Roses Group), many have been saved from extinction and once again grow in gardens, public and private, throughout the United States.

Stephen Scanniello is best known as a hands on gardener who transformed the Cranford Rose Garden of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden into one of the world’s most acclaimed rose gardens.
Stephen is the president of the Heritage Rose Foundation and has co-authored several award winning rose books. He lives and gardens in Jersey City and Barnegat, New Jersey.

Thursday, October 4, 2007
Denver Botanic Gardens – Morrison Center
6:30 – 8 p.m.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Now you see it - Now you don’t

The word iridescence is defined as the change in hue of the color of an object as the observer changes viewing position. Iridencent colors are not produced by pigmentation (like green in leaves due to the chlorophyll pigment or orange color in carrots because of the carotene pigment). Iridescent color is produced by the interference of light due to multiple reflections within the physical structure of a material. In the nature you can see iridescent color in butterfly wings, peacock feathers, hummingbirds etc. If you like to read more about the subject please visit natural photonics at The University of Exeter. UK. There are also several articles to download if you like to learn more.

Cleome in process (pastel) by Jessa Huebing-Reitinger

Iridescent colors are not totally uncommon in the plant world and we know how difficult the iridescent color is to illustrate with pigment.
Jessa Huebing-Reitinger is giving us a 3-day workshop (Wednesday to Friday, September 26-28; 10a.m. – 4 p.m.) . The course price is $181 for members and $218 for nonmember. NOTE: The only prerequisite is Pencil I. All class materials are provided for $5. Last day to register is on Monday, September 24th. Register
on-line or call 720-865-3680.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Cafe Botanique, September 20 - Waring House

How Botanical Illustrators Changed The Course of Horticultural History
By Nancy Styler

Nancy Styler will take you on a trip back in time, and across the ocean from South America to Europe, as she tells you of the discovery and reporting of the Victoria water lilies, and how the botanical illustrations of this unique new plant changed horticulture forever. She will also discuss the work of the Victoria Conservancy, its research and breeding programs, and what the future may hold for the Queen of the water lilies.

Nancy Styler, with her husband Trey, founded and co-direct the Victoria Conservancy, a non-profit branch of the International Waterlily and Water Gardening Society. In addition to research, seed-banking and distribution, the Conservancy is the source of the Victorian Water Lilies at Denver Botanic Gardens each year.
(Image: Crystal Palace, Hyde Park, London 1851)

Denver Botanic Gardens, Waring House (NW corner of 9th Ave and York Street), 6:30 - 8 p.m.

You are all welcome!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Happy times ~

(Click the image to enlarge).
This summer’s BI-graduates (June 2007) received their Certificates at the Annual Student Art Show reception– we wish you good luck, however we also like to see you soon in the classroom again. The student art show reception was attended by >100 people. If you have not seen the show yet, please visit it, the art is incredible. All instructors are extremely pleased with your results.
(Two graduates are missing from the picture)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Cafe Botanique, Thursday Sept 6, 2007 - Waring House

Symbolism and Beauty Painted into One: Hidden Meanings in Chinese Flower Paintings
By Sally Yu Leung

In China, images of flowers and plants often convey hidden messages. In this program, Sally Yu Leung, an independent curator of Chinese decorative arts, collector, teacher of Chinese brush-painting at Pixar Animation Studios, and also a Commissioner at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco will reveal the symbolism and hidden meanings of the botanical motifs in Chinese flower paintings. These imageries are aesthetically pleasing as well as the bearers of auspicious messages. Come and discover how one can become a sleuth on Chinese botanical symbolism.

Denver Botanic Gardens, Waring House (NW corner of 9th Ave and York Street), 6:30 - 8 p.m.
You are all welcome!

Sunday, September 2, 2007

The Annual Student Art Show 2007

Students from the Botanical Art and Illustration Program display their art in Gates Garden Court between September 1st and October 31st. More than 50 outstanding botanical plates decorate the walls and display cases. Random selection can bee seen by clicking here.

(K. Eberhardt)

Reception for the students of the program on Friday, September 14, 2007, 5-7 p.m.
Please join us and Meet the students - Meet the artists - Celebrate the 2007 Graduates!
(click the images to enlarge)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Congratulations Susie Crane!

One of our BI-students, Susie Crane received the 2007 Colorado Land Stewardship Award. Besides volunteering for Outdoor Colorado, Susie also actively volunteers with Denver Botanic Gardens and other organizations.
The Colorado Land Stewardship Awards recognize those outstanding individuals, conservation organizations and members of the business community who demonstrate commitment, leadership and vision to the preservation and enhancement of Colorado’s public lands.

Congratulations, Susie – This is a huge honor!

Ecoarts in Colorado

ECOARTS is a collaboration of major science, environmental, arts, and other organizations offering events designed to educate, inspire, and empower us all. September 14-October 6, 2007 you can find EcoArt activities in Boulder, Denver, Ft. Collins and Lyons.
Volunteer for EcoArts, September 14-October 6, and join visual and sound installation artists, ice core scientists, indigenous filmmakers, religious leaders, culinary gardeners and others coming together to raise consciousness about climate change while creating possibilities for a sustainable future! Opportunities to be involved include disseminating posters/brochures, ushering talks/performances and cooking for an indigenous knowledge feast. Informational meeting with refreshments Thursday, August 30, 5:30 pm, Dairy Center for the Arts, 2590 Walnut, V-Room, Boulder.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It is time to think about the September BI-courses

[Adisia polyciphala by Robert Wight (1796-1872): Illustrations of Indian botany or figures illustrative of each of the natural orders of Indian plants described in the author's prodromus florae peninsulae Indiae orientalis. Madras, 1840-1850.]

It is September soon and we can again, gradually start our evening's program by offering first Pencil I on Monday evenings and Watercolor I on Tuesday evenings (6-9 p.m.).
Please, note that the next time Watercolor I is offered in the evenings, will be in Fall 2008!
In Fort Collins we offer a weekend Botany class (Friday-Sunday; September 21-23). FYI: The number of seats for the Fort Collins’ classes is now limited to eleven (11).
For other required classes offered both in Denver and Fort Collins, please click here. You can find a more detailed description of the classes in the regular cataloque.
Our excellent instructor Karla Beatty just returned from a four-week trip to India. Directly related to her trip we will offer the class: Ancient India and the Gardens of South Asia. Do not miss this unique opportunity.
Another interesting elective course that deserves a special note is Spice Plants from Asia. The art from this class will be displayed in the Connors’ Family exhibit case in Gates Garden Court during the Holidays - an excellent way to display your art during the busiest visitor season at DBG. See for the more detailed description of the elective classes here.
Jessa Huebing-Reitinger's guest workshop is coming up in September, please note that we have reduced the course fee by 30%.

Remember to stop by Gates Garden Court, the Instructors Art Show can be viewed there for three more days, Student Art Show will come up on Friday (~ 55 pieces of art!). Please, mark your calendar the reception on Friday, September 14th, 5-7 p.m.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Metamorphosis à la Chapungu

Opal stone transforms into a Chrysanthemum hybrid:

Day 1. 60 minutes into the 5 day class the disk flowers have found their right position

Day 5. The disk and rayflowers of the newly discovered Chrysanthemum are shiny and polished.

(Chupungu: Custom and Legend, A Culture in Stone)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Maria Hodkins in Fort Collins

Thursday, October 4 6:30-8:30 p.m. and Friday, October 5 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

For more information and to register, please call the Gardens on Spring Creek (970-416-2486).

Monday, August 20, 2007

Café Botanique - Wednesday, August 22 - Morrison Center

Genetic Heritage of Dry Bean Accounts and Breast Cancer
By Mark A. Brick, Ph.D., Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO

The chemical and nutritional composition of dry beans varies among market classes. Previous reports have shown that beans differ in their ability to accumulate micronutrients and in their content of phytochemicals that have been linked to positive health benefits. To better understand whether genetic heritage of dry beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) influence their health benefits, we investigated anti-cancer activity in laboratory animals fed different dry bean types. Dry beans that originated in Middle America had cancer multiplicity that was 40% higher than beans from Andean South America. Antioxidant capacity of the bean was not associated with cancer multiplicity, even though levels differed by 300% indicating that there is significant genetic diversity for anti-cancer activity based on genetic heritage rather than antioxidant activity.

Mark Brick is a Professor of Plant Breeding in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences at Colorado State University. He is currently the leader of the CSU Dry Bean Breeding Project (DBBP), and responsible for development of dry edible bean varieties for the western U.S.. His research interests include genetic mechanisms of disease resistance, plant architecture and more recently on the health benefits of dry edible beans with the Cancer Prevention Laboratory at Colorado State University. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy and has collaborated with scientists, farmers and industry clientele in the U.S. and internationally.

You are all welcome!

Friday, August 17, 2007

'Pink Ribbon' Waterlilly

A new plant (Nymphaea ‘Pink Ribbon’) has been introduced to the world and it is on display at Denver Botanic Gardens. The Gardens is one of only three locations worldwide that will be displaying and testing a new species of waterlily that has been developed for a great cause. It is part of an international project to raise money for fighting breast cancer.

Water Gardeners International (WGI) developed the species and gave it the name 'Pink Ribbon'. The plant’s color matches the shade of pink used on ribbons that support breast cancer awareness. One of these new species is proudly displayed in the Monet Horseshoe Pool at Denver Botanic Gardens. The remaining two plants are on display at the New York Botanic Garden and Wishing Well Ponds in Oklahoma City, OK.

Denver Botanic Gardens’ water gardens are recognized as one of the top water gardens in the world. Some of the other rare water plant species in the Gardens collection include “Rocky Mountain Legacy Collection” featuring the elegant pink N. ‘Denver’s Delight’ (Tomocik), French vanilla N. ‘Denver’ (Strawn) and salmon N. ‘Colorado’ (Strawn) at their best.

All three ‘Pink Ribbon’ plants have been auctioned off on-line, and have raised $1,500 for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. The buyer wanted each flower displayed at a major botanic garden. No other “Pink Ribbon” waterlilies will be available in 2007. This year, the ‘Pink Ribbon’ hybrid varietal will be evaluated in a test garden with the expectation that more significant quantities will be propagated in 2008 and sold. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to breast cancer charities.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Café Botanique - Thursday, August 9

In Quest of Tomorrow’s Medicines from Plant Biodiversity
By Barbara Timmermann, Ph.D., University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS

From ancient to modern times, plants have been used as medicinal agents, first on folkloric basis and later developed on a scientific basis into single agent drugs, such as the antiasthmatic drug ephedrine or the anti-cancer drug taxol. The drug discovery and development program in the speaker’s laboratory use plants and microorganisms as an essential route to new pharmaceutical leads.
Prospecting in search of new drugs provides a potentially strong set of tools for the development of local economies and conservation of natural resources in areas rich in biodiversity. Ongoing research that integrates the process of drug discovery leads from natural products, biodiversity conservation, and sustainable economic growth in a unique model that incorporates academic science, traditional knowledge, commercial research and novel intellectual property mechanisms will be discussed.

Barbara Timmermann is University Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicinal Chemistry in the School of Pharmacy at the University of Kansas. Dr. Timmermann’s remarkable record of commitment to education in the classroom has mirrored her research career. She serves as a member of various advisory boards including the American Botanical Council. In 2000, she was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and more recently, she was named a 2006-2007 Woman of Distinction at KU.
Classroom C, 6:30-8 p.m.
You are all welcome!

Friday, August 3, 2007

Deadline approaching!

Student Art Show

Congratulations Carol!

Carol Till received a Merit Award (with $$) for her botanical piece at the Lakewood “Trees” show. Lakewood Arts Council is sponsoring Figures and Creatures with August 14th deadline and Exploration with September 18 deadline. Please consider these local exhibits, entry fee is only $7.oo and you can receive a cash price for both shows.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

The Raphael of Flowers

Parrot Tulips (detail) by Constance Sayas, Instructor
Hydrangea macrophylla by Kathy Cranmer

A number of BI students with their instructor display Redouté inspired Botanical art in the Connors Family Exhibit Case in the Gates Garden Court (Denver Botanic Gardens) with original Redouté pieces from the Helen Fowler Library’s collection. Student art is from the class: Drawing on Tradition: Pierre-Joseph Redouté (January 2007). Please visit and enjoy.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Stone Carving Workshops

Not only you can see the beautiful stone artwork from Zimbabwe at Denver Botanic Gardens, the Gardens and Chapungu offer a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to study and work with Chapungu’s master stone sculptors from Zimbabwe, some of whom are considered to be among the world’s greatest living sculptors. In this workshop you will be provided with your own stone-carving tools, and will receive training from two on-site Chapungu artists who will help you create your own sculptural masterpiece. Lunch each day will be on your own, and bring your own snacks. The workshops will be held outside, either under a tent or under trees, depending on the weather and space, so dress for the weather. All workshops are held Tuesday –Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call Shirley at 720.865.3580 to register.
Today was the third day Anna Russo was working with her stone (opal) and forming it to a beautiful face.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Last week I spent three very warm days at the GNSI (Guild of Natural Science Illustrators) annual conference in Bozeman, Montana. It didn’t matter if it was a lecture, demonstration of different techniques, or a panel discussion - all parts of the program were very well organized, interesting and informative - from the early morning to the late night. I just wished that I had been able to be in two sometimes three locations at the same time and listen to the parallel sessions.
I warmly recommend the membership in the Guild.
You might also consider posting your portfolio in, where you can post 70 images for $189 / year if you are a GNSI, AMI or IAAA member. For further information about the Science-art services and membership, please click here.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Instructors' Art Show

Rosa 'Clair Renaissance' with Hydrangea by Constance Sayas

Please visit Gates Garden Court at Denver Botanic Gardens and enjoy the display of botanical illustrations and paintings by the talented BI instructors in the Gardens' certificate program. The works of our seven instructors will hang there until August 31.

(Four of the Seven)

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Cafe Botanique, Thursday 19th

Legs, Wings and Other Parts – How Are They Used in the Insect Taxonomy ?
By David Ruiter

Given the recent interest in insect illustration, a summary of the obvious insect parts is presented to assist the artist with both an understanding of the parts and their relationship to each other. Photos and illustrations of a variety of insect anatomy is provided.
David Ruiter has been involved in insect taxonomy, with a particular focus on the caddisflies (Insecta: Trichoptera), for over 30 years.
Denver Botanic Gardens - Gates Hall, 6:30-8p.m.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Hard to believe...

Schools are starting soon…. BI program has also several required and elective classes starting in August. Please, take an advantage from the elective offerings – e.g., there is a vide variety of heirlooms in the garden to be used as a drawing object. These vegetables are not necessarily available during the other seasons and in the supermarket.

Have you ever hear about Bacteriography – the painting with bacteria? This technique has years been practiced at the Center of Biofilm Engineering, Montana State University, Bozeman, MO.

(image source: CBE News Update, Volume 6, Issue 3-4)

A true combination of Art and Science.