Rory McEwen – The Colours Of Reality at KEW Gardens

Running from 11 May to 22 September 2013 at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art at Kew Gardens, is the art exhibition of Rory McEwen.

An Indian onion, painted in Benares, 1971.

An Indian onion, painted in Benares, 1971.

The Colours of Reality is a colourful history of this renowned Scottish artist and musician.

Two anemones (purple) 1963-64.

Two anemones (purple) 1963-64.

 

The Colours of Reality exhibition brings together both of his artistic and musical work shows the many facets of his creative career.

Allwood's carnation I, 1962.

Allwood’s carnation I, 1962.

Beginning in the 1950s to the early 1980s, the exhibits include some of his more famous hyper-realistic botanical paintings and feature many of his etchings and sketch books.

Dying tulip II, 1976.

Dying tulip II, 1976.

You can also peruse the lesser-known pieces such as collages, and there is an example of a rare sculpture on show.

Fritillaria caucasica 1981.

Fritillaria caucasica 1981.

Fans of McEwen will love him for his botanical studies, and indeed, he had a major impact on how botanical works were portrayed in this field.

Old Pink, Caesar's Mantle, from 1962.

Old Pink, Caesar’s Mantle, from 1962.

He contributed to a huge turning point in the development of contemporary botanical art with his posthumous 1988 Serpentine Gallery exhibition, and botanical artists cite him as an inspiration to this day.

Red pepper II, 1981.

Red pepper II, 1981.

Kew Gardens have reserved four gallery spaces to his botanical studies, and you can find out more about McEwen’s life and loves at the Rory McEwen exhibition.

Rose, 1970

Rose, 1970

For more information and to buy tickets visit kew.org

Two Anemones (red) 1963–64 (detail).

Two Anemones (red) 1963–64 (detail).

Garden tickets – £14.50 for adults and £12.50 for concessions. Kids 16 and under go free.

There is also a book to accompany the exhibition called Rory McEwen – The Colours of Reality by Martyn Rix, which is priced at £25.

Rory McEwen - The Colours of Reality by Martyn Rix

Rory McEwen – The Colours of Reality by Martyn Rix

The book is written by McEwen’s friend Martyn, who says: “He really brought it from illustration into an art form in itself by going into such intense details so it was beyond photography. He did modern abstract work as well, always going off and trying new experimental things, but the botanical paintings are his main contribution to art. He continued a tradition and created something new, bringing a modern aspect to a classical tradition. He’s still better than anyone else.”

The multi-talented Rory McEwen

The multi-talented Rory McEwen

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