Botanical Art Worldwide: South Africa to be held on May 18, 2018

A worldwide collaboration linking people with plants through contemporary botanical art.

Note: This is version three of this document and all amendments have been highlighted in red text for your convenience

Over a dozen participating countries have joined together to link people to plants through botanical art. Hundreds of artists around the world will capture in paint, ink or pencil, plants native to their home countries to raise awareness of wild plant diversity.

Exhibitions of original contemporary botanical art will be curated by participating countries around the world based on an indigenous plants theme. Each country’s sponsoring organisation will schedule events for a Worldwide Day of Botanical Art to be held on May 18, 2018.  This 24-hour, around the world event will maximise focus on the message: linking people with plants through contemporary botanical art.  All exhibition dates will include May 18, 2018. A digital compilation of images from all exhibitions worldwide will be shown at each participating venue, alongside that country’s original artworks.

Participating countries include Australia, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, United Kingdom, and United States.

-          To present a cohesive message about the ability to link the world’s people with plants through botanical art.
-          To build partnerships and educate the global community about the worldwide renaissance in botanical art.
-          To increase appreciation and understanding of the world’s precious plant diversity and its interconnectedness.
-          To acknowledge and build upon the increasing connections between artists worldwide.
-          To maximize all these messages on an international stage.

The South African exhibition will be held in Johannesburg under the auspice of the Botanical Artists Association of Southern Africa, BAASA, in May 2018 at the Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg.  The official opening will take place Thursday 17th May and the show will run for a month.

The Everard Read Gallery is the oldest commercial gallery in Africa and celebrated their centenary in 2013.  Built on this proud heritage is the present day contemporary gallery which represents the finest South African and international artists.

The hosting of the Worldwide Botanical Art Exhibition at this prestigious venue presents exciting opportunities for botanical art in South Africa and our botanical artists.

The image chosen for the exhibition logo is Mandala mundii by the Cape botanical artist Christiaan Lochner.  This beautifully painted specimen was exhibited on the Plant Exhibition.

The Steering Committee for this exhibition comprises two representatives from each region.

Gauteng: Gillian Condy and Karen Bryden
Western Cape: Vicki Thomas
      KwaZulu Natal: Snooks Cole and Elsa Pooley

Many other BAASA members will have the opportunity of working on this project in conjunction with the Steering Committee as the tasks are many and varied.

This exhibition is open to all BAASA members in good standing, residing in Southern Africa.  Each artist may enter only one country’s exhibition, that being the country of residence. If you are aware of talented botanical artists working in South Africa or our neighbouring countries, they may be given a special invitation to participate.
Each country’s artworks will showcase its own unique flora of the country, depicted through individual artists’ chosen two-dimensional media.
-          All artworks must have been executed within the past three years and not exhibited before in a major gallery in Gauteng.
-          Botanical accuracy, composition and handling of media will also be considered during selection.
-          Artworks need not form a theme, but should have a cohesiveness and wall appeal.
-          All artists must guarantee that their work was executed by themselves and has not contravened copyright.
-          Any two-dimensional media will be accepted including watercolour, oils, acrylic, gouache, ink, graphite and coloured pencil.
-          All works must be for sale

The following criteria apply to miniature artworks:
-          Works may not exceed 170 mm x 170 mm (or equivalent areas e.g. 180 mm x 160 mm) including the frame, which may not exceed 25 mm in width on mounted work and 30 mm on non-mounted work
-          Subjects should be 1/6th of life size, or if the specimen is particularly small it should be rendered in the spirit of miniaturism
-          No overpainting of printed images will be permitted.
And after successful selection:
-          No non-reflective glass will be permitted
-          Works must be archivally framed and ready for hanging.
Should you submit miniatures for selection, they will not be counted as part of your four larger submissions.

Subject matter
Artists may depict any indigenous botanical material including all types of plant material from shrubs and trees to grasses, flowers, lichen, mosses and fungi. 
-          Subject matter must be indigenous to southern Africa, from within the boundaries of: South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.    Not including the islands off the mainland.
-          No cultivated hybrids. The international requirements state: “Definition of a Native plant: Any wild plant indigenous to a country, including natural hybrids, but excluding any cultivar, man-made hybrids and naturalised exotics”.
-          Full plants and/or all parts of plant morphology - such as flowers, leaves, fruits, seeds and root systems - can be depicted. 
-          Plant pollinators such as bees, butterflies and birds may be included, provided they do not form the main subject of the work. 
-          Containers such as pots or vases should not be included.
-          Full botanical names of all plants must be given on the submission forms. (If you are not sure, please ask Gill Condy for an identification and she will ask a colleague for assistance).

In order to bring cohesion to the exhibition the following frames will be admitted:
-          Antique white frames
-          Natural light wood frames
-          Black or natural dark wood frames, especially for graphite work and pen and ink.

No gilt frames will be permitted. 

It will be the artist’s choice whether single or double mount boards are used, whether the mount board is scored or left plain, or whether inlays are used.

Framing of canvases will be optional for artists working in oils on canvas.

Submission of intent to exhibit will be required by 1 July 2017This date may seem very early, but it is so we can judge whether we have an exhibition and whether we need to motivate further.

Artists may submit between one and four artworks. The regional Selection Committees may select any number of these works. Artists may bring six works to selection of which four will be chosen.

All artworks must be framed, with a moulding that does not detract from the art.  The Steering Committee reserves the right not to hang works if deemed unsuitable. Artworks must be ready to hang (with eyelets and hanging wire/cord in place) when delivered in May 2018.

The Steering Committee reserves the right, on request, to use material for publicity purposes.

No price changes will be considered once artworks are accepted, as it leads to confusion.

A high resolution image of all selected artworks will be required from each artist by 11th December 2017 for dissemination to all participating countries so that a selection representing South Africa can be shown at their venues.

These images will also be used for the production of a catalogue, subject to the availability of funds for the production, and an online catalogue.

Selection of artworks will take place regionally in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban in November 2017.  Each region of BAASA will be responsible for organising selection of artworks for this exhibition from their regional members of good standing.

Regional Committees will assist artists with couriering the selected artworks to Gauteng as one consignment.

A registration fee will be payable.
-          R150 for one painting
-          R200 for 2 paintings
-          R300 for 3 paintings
-          R400 for 4 paintings

Works will be excluded if the registration fee has not been paid.

A 30% commission will apply - 25% commission will be levied on sales by the Gallery and 5% by BAASA.  The BAASA commission may be waived subject to sponsorship.

BAASA will be allowed to have a sales table for cards on the opening evening. Cards will be sold at R20.00 each, of which BAASA will take R5.00 for facilitating the sale.

This communication and subsequent ones will be sent to all BAASA members directly and will be available on the BAASA blog.

A dedicated newsletter will be set up to showcase the exhibition and inform interested parties of the relevant dates and activities. We will also use the BAASA Facebook page to communicate any relevant information.

Workshops and critique sessions will be part of the BAASA calendar for 2017 to ensure support for all artists aiming to submit works for this exhibition.

Important dates IN 2017 AND 2018
Submission of intention to exhibit - 1 July 2017 (Intent to Exhibit Forms available here.)
Regional selection – 17/18 November 2017 – Gauteng
                                  07 November 2017 – W. Cape
                                   ……  November 2017 - KZN
Artworks need to reach Johannesburg approximately one week prior to the exhibition date, between 07 – 11 May. Artworks will be delivered to the gallery, as one consignment, three days before the exhibition. No late artworks will be accepted.

Post exhibition, all unsold artworks will be removed from the gallery as one consignment to a safe space, to be packed and collected by couriers for the other regions, or collected by the Gauteng artists.

All efforts will be taken to protect the artworks. BAASA Gauteng, the Steering Committee and the Gallery will not take any responsibility for loss or damage.  Artists are responsible for insuring their own works.

Gillian Condy
June 2017
Version 3

(Download a pdf version of this document here.)