A worldwide collaboration linking people with plants
through contemporary botanical art


Hello once again.

How is the painting coming along?  We have received many queries and some that might affect you are dealt with in detail below.  But first some gallery news ………

Everard Read Gallery news
It was very heartening to understand the attitude of the gallery to the Worldwide Exhibition at a recent meeting with Mark Read and his staff.  They are 100% behind this exhibition and have listened to our requests with a very positive ear.  Here are some of the items agreed with the gallery that affect artists directly.

Opening and duration
The opening night will be the 17th May 2018.  The exhibition will run for one month.  We could not have wished for more.  The long duration will allow us to arrange activities to draw people to the exhibition and create exposure for our art form and artists.  The gallery has agreed to guided walkabouts, lecture evenings and artists working in the gallery.  The gallery has also agreed to pay for 50% of the costs for the opening night function.

Gallery space
We had thought of inviting some of the gallery's contracted and well-known artists to participate.  On this point the gallery was in agreement and had taken the idea many steps further.  They have dedicated the entire main gallery to our exhibition and will be inviting many of their usual artists to paint with the same theme in mind and these artists will be exhibited in Circa.  Therefore, the entire campus will be dedicated to bringing people closer to plants and will offer the public both the more traditional botanical art and the contemporary approach, but in different galleries.  For those of you not familiar with the Everard Read Gallery, the Circa gallery is an iconic oval building across the road from the main gallery.

NB – By obtaining the entire main gallery for our use, means we have a vast wall space to fill.  As stated previously and repeated in the attached exhibition criteria, artists are permitted to submit FOUR paintings and we encourage you to bring more to selection day so that the best four can be chosen.

It is worthwhile noting that a gallery of this caliber normally charges a 50% commission on paintings that retail for considerably more than botanical art.  Mark Read has generously agreed to adjust their commission.  A 30% commission will be charged on paintings sold on our exhibition – 25% to the gallery and 5% to BAASA.  Depending on the success of securing sponsorship, the BAASA portion of the commission may be dropped.

Payment terms
Sales of paintings will be managed by the gallery staff and processed through their system.  This alleviates our need to staff the exhibition with volunteers.  Artists will be paid by the gallery 60 days following the closure of the exhibition.

Card Sales
The sale of cards will be permitted on opening night and we will call for volunteers to man the table.  These sales will not be processed through the gallery and therefore the gallery will not be taking any commission on the sales.  The price of cards will be R20 (twenty rand) each and BAASA will take a R5 (five rand) commission for administering the sale.  Only cash transactions will be accepted as there will be no credit card facility on the night.
The sale of prints or any other form of art will not be allowed, which is understandable. 
When you are planning your exhibition paintings, think in terms of the image suitability for cards as well.  Existing cards will be most welcome too.  All cards will need to be printed professionally, be of the highest quality and packaged individually with an envelope in a cellophane sleeve.

The gallery has full time security, but it will be the artist's responsibility to insure their paintings if they so wish.  The gallery, Steering Committee and BAASA accept no risk.
Mark Read has agreed to write the foreword for our catalogue which will give it a certain gravitas. 

Fungi, Lichens and mosses
The World Steering Committee have left the inclusion or exclusion of fungi, lichens and mosses up to each country.  Therefore, we welcome their inclusion should any artist wish to paint them and our exhibition guidelines have been amended to include them.

Previously we provided the following definition as agreed to by the international steering committee:

Definition of a native plant: Any wild plant indigenous to a country, including natural hybrids, but excluding any cultivar, man-made hybrids or naturalised exotics.

This has not provided clarity to all.  We suggest that if you have a query regarding a specific plant, after you have done your own research and discussed it with an indigenous nursery, only then please contact Gillian Condy who will try and find someone to assist.

The SANBI site provides a wealth of information.  

Exhibition name change
The exhibition has been renamed by the World Steering Committee and will now be referred to as Botanical Art Worldwide.

Exhibition criteria
We once again attach the exhibition criteria with amendments, which have all been brought to your attention in communications, clearly marked. 

As you might be aware if you have attended exhibitions at Everard Read gallery, they tend to frame using a simple, modern profile which provides consistency to the exhibition and does not compete with the art work.  We are not in the same position to achieve that level of uniformity but have considered choosing a few colours that artists across the country can conform to without ratcheting up unnecessary cost.

White frames worked for the Plant exhibition where the paintings were displayed on the Kirstenbosch green walls.  White frames can fight with paper and mount boards that are not quite white and can make smaller and delicate specimens disappear on white walls.  Everard Read's walls are white and while they have agreed we can paint some of the walls, it is not feasible to paint the entire gallery and then restore it to white at the end of the exhibition.  Under consideration are antique white, natural wood and black frames for graphite pieces.  We will advise you closer to the time.

We recommend that you do not frame your work finally for selection.  All paintings selected have to be digitised to send overseas in early December, not to mention a final tweak or two the Selectors might suggest.  It would be counterproductive to frame and unframe work for this purpose.  In order to present your paintings optimally to the Selection Committee they can be presented in mount boards covered in acetate.  There will be plenty of time to frame selected paintings finally in the period January to May 2018.

Until the next newsletter when we hope to bring you news from another participating country, happy painting!