Maria Sibylla Merian and daughters: women of art and science

Exhibition: 10 June - 31 August 2008

Maria Sibylla Merian, Pomegranates. Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France

Maria Sibylla Merian (1642-1717), Pomegranates, ca. 1665
Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France

From the website of the J. Paul Getty Museum

Maria Sibylla Merian (German, 1647–1717) was a pioneering woman of art, science, and business. She was an accomplished painter of flowers and insects and an entomologist from an early age. In her fifties, she traveled to Surinam, then a Dutch colony in South America, to study extraordinary insects first hand. Working with her two daughters, Merian made and produced one of the greatest illustrated natural history books of all time, The Insects of Surinam. This exhibition introduces Maria Sibylla Merian to American audiences and focuses on natural history illustration, which is one of the most accessible and engaging art forms. Co-organized by the Museum Het Rembrandthuis and the J. Paul Getty Museum, the exhibition travels to Los Angeles after its presentation in Amsterdam and is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue.

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