We are pleased to offer these superb photogravures from Karl Blossfeldt's rare and beautiful work, Wundergarten der Natur, (Nature's Magic Garden), 1932. Born in Schielo, Germany, early on Blossfeldt (1865-1932) was a sculptor's apprentice and modeler at the Art Ironworks and Foundry in Magdesprung. After studying painting and sculpture on a scholarship at the School of the Royal Museum of Arts and Crafts in Berlin from 1884 to 1891, he worked under Professor Meurer in Italy, Greece, and North Africa collecting plant specimens. It was during these years that Blossfeldt's interest in plant photography blossomed, along with the study of music.
For about 33 years, from 1898 to 1931, he was a professor in the sculpture of living plants at the Kunstgewerbemuseum (College of Arts and Crafts) in Berlin. In 1899, he began to photograph plant forms with a homemade camera incorporating these studies into his teaching curriculum. Blossfeldt continued to travel throughout his life, particularly in the Mediterranean, collecting specimens of foreign plants. He retired in 1931.
Influenced by the 19th century German tradition of natural philosophy, Karl Blossfeldt believed that "the plant must be valued as a totally artistic and architectural structure." Over a period of 30 years, he photographed leaves, seed pods, stems, and other plant parts, against neutral white or grey backgrounds in Northern light & under magnification. He drew inspiration, like many before him, from the medical botany & herbaria of the late Middle Ages and the 17th and 18th centuries. Deeply steeped in many disciplines, both scientific, creative & artistic, he has distilled a vision of the botanical world that is so vibrant & powerful, it bridges & fuses many worlds. It is a vision that has remained unfailing contemporary & that never ceases to amaze & delight those who love plant forms. For this reason, we include these remarkable photogravures in our botanical print collection.
Each print measures approximately 9 ½ inches by 12 ½ inches, and is in excellent condition, without foxing & on high quality paper. On a few, there is a light marginal paper stub as shown. A copy of the title page will be included with each print. Please note these are ORIGINAL photogravures from 1932, not reproductions. These photogravures, which can be simply framed with a white black core rag mat & wood frame, are superbly decorative, with a unique vision that remains fresh and exciting to this very day.