Pollinate / Illuminate

Marjan Verstappen’s stunning drawings are a fresh take on botanical illustration.  Running at Huntclub gallery from April 17 to 29, 2014, the MFA thesis exhibition Pollinate/Illuminate explores the marvellous fact that bees and humans are both attracted to flowers, but see them in different colour spectrums. 

In her art practice, Verstappen blends human sensation with the sensation of domesticated plants and animals to help her audience understand the desires and experiences of these often overlooked creatures. Verstappen seeks to undo traditional methods of representing nature by making artwork that considers the perspective of other creatures we live with, like bees. 

“The survival of humans and bees is intertwined because we share a food source, I wanted to make something that explored our shared desires.  When I learned about the ultraviolet marks on flowers that guide bees towards the pollen, I immediately thought of runway lights guiding planes into land.  These drawings are a map for understanding this alien way of experiencing flowers.” 

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