Art and Design 352 -- Curriculum / Collection at UMMA

Florilegium: Creating A Plant Compendium

Stamps School of Art and Design

Faculty member: Cathy Barry (Art and Design; University of Michigan's Biological Station)

Obi (detail), Japan, mid- to late-20th century, brocade silk. University of Michigan Museum of Art, Gift of Mrs. Kazuko Miyake, 2016/2.25

In this course, students will create a handmade book of drawings and paintings inspired by a semester-long investigation into wide-ranging topics relating to plants, art, design, and nature. In developing their compendium, students will draw inspiration from the ways artists engage with the shapes, life systems, and cultural meanings of plant life, while incorporating hands-on fieldwork, library research, and studio activity.


Really going out and looking at plants, collecting plants, identifying plants… is key to really having any effect on climate change because we’re acknowledging nature. We really need to get people to recognize what we have.

Professor Cathy Barry

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Today’s Assignment: Around a Quarter To Ten Plan To Do Some Watercoloring

Florilegium explores how art and design intersects with nature and plants, incorporating hands-on fieldwork and material excavation with the artistic process. Listen in as Professor Cathy Barry describes today’s assignment.

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Works included in this collection

Exhibition Support

Lead support for this exhibition is provided by the University of Michigan Office of the Provost, Erica Gervais Pappendick and Ted Pappendick, the Eleanor Noyes Crumpacker Endowment Fund, and P.J. and Julie Solit.

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