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Flora Photographica

The Flower in Contemporary Photography

William A. Ewing, Danaé Panchaud


Vivid, bold, spectacular and unexpected: a definitive overview of one of contemporary photography’s most innovative fields, showcasing flower imagery by more than 120 of the world’s leading practitioners

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There has never been a period in photography’s long history – no school, no movement – when flowers have not been a central focus, whether in the form of the classic still life, the botanical study, incorporated into portraiture and studies of the human body, documented in street photography, or used subversively in surrealist collage and montage.

Today, flower photography remains in full bloom, with photographers the world over depicting flowers and floral motifs in novel ways. Featuring works by more than 120 photographers, Flora Photographica links the very best of flower photography from the past thirty years with its predecessors – canonical floral studies from the realms of photography, botanical illustration, drawing and painting that have marked the collective imagination for centuries, if not millennia.

Works by contemporary photographers such as Cindy Sherman, Thomas Ruff, Vik Muniz, Valérie Belin, Viviane Sassen and Martin Schoeller appear across nine thematic chapters, complemented by two in-depth essays by curators William A. Ewing and Danaé Panchaud exploring the relationship between contemporary works and the rich traditions of floral art and photography.

Vibrant and abundant with myriad species of flora, this stunning book is both a celebration of organic beauty and a keen look at the meaning of flowers in human culture – not to mention an insightful look at a key aspect of contemporary photography – making it a must-have publication for lovers of flowers and photography alike.

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'The photographs take centre stage'
Times LUXX

'An essential compendium of flowers in contemporary image-making'

'Playful and inventive'
Daily Telegraph

'Contemporary flower photos flourish'
Financial Times

'Dazzling ... Brings the history of flower photography up into the new millennium ... Poignant essays accompany the images'

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback

Edition Type: New Edition

Size: 29.5 x 24.5 cm

Extent: 272 pp

Illustrations: 200

Publication date: 9 June 2022

ISBN: 9780500024584

Contents List

Beneath the Lenticular Eye: The Flower in 21st-Century Photography
The Flowering of Photography
Artists' Statements

About the Author

William A. Ewing is an author, lecturer and curator of photography. Director of the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne from 1996 to 2010, his many publications on photography include The Body (1994), Edward Burtynsky: Essential Elements (2016) and Civilization (2018), all published by Thames & Hudson. Danaé Panchaud is a curator and lecturer specializing in photography. She is the director and curator of the Photoforum Pasquart in Biel, an exhibition centre dedicated to Swiss and international emerging photography.

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