Friday, 30 December 2011

Dates for the exhibitions at the SSGOBA

  Herbarium Painting by Rachel Pedder-Smith ©

I thought, with a lot of you trying to organise your trips to London during the SBA exhibitions in April that it would be useful to point out what is on and what isn't in the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art this Spring. We are actually having a major re-refurbishment during that time, to prepare ourselves for the David Nash exhibition which starts in June. This is unfortunate, but there is the Marianne North Gallery and bits of the SSGOBA will be half open showing all sorts of work. This includes the extraordinary piece by Rachel Pedder-Smith. Rachel, for the past three years or so has been painting specimens from the herbarium at Kew for her PhD at the Royal College of Art, London. She has just finished it and the 533cm long piece will be on show from the 31st March until the 7th May. Yes, it's over 5m long! I think this is the best bet for all those travelling to the SBA exhibition 'Botanical Celebration' in April 2012. I have seen this painting in the flesh and it is something to marvel at. I am not keen on Rachel's work if I am honest. I didn't like the piece showing for the Watercolour exhibition at the Tate Britain. However I LOVE this herbarium painting. There is something very beautiful about it. It is less cluttered I think, and that is what I like.

  Herbarium Painting by Rachel Pedder-Smith ©

I realise the Kew website is not up to date yet and this is partly my fault, but I am waiting for some text and images. So, to give you a bit more info, I have copied and pasted the text that's going into the Kew Magazine. Please note that these dates can move if anything unexpected occurs and so it is good practise to phone the gallery on 020 8332 3622 before visiting.


Exhibitions at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art
Open daily from 9.30, no extra charge

Galleries 5 & 6 until 9 April 2012
The last opportunity to see Plants in Peril  – paintings of endangered plants 

 Encephalartos woodii, Leslie Carol Berge ©. Extinct in the wild

Galleries 2, 3, 4 until 9 April 2012
Celebrating the life and work of Sir Joseph Hooker, Director of Kew from 1865 until 1885

Rhododendron hookeri by Joseph Dalton Hooker, RBG Kew ©

Gallery 1 from 31 March until 7 May 2012

   Herbarium Painting by Rachel Pedder-Smith ©

Gallery 6 from 5 May until 14 April 2013

 Leaves by Brigid Edwards ©

Galleries 1,2,3,4, 5 from 9 June until April 2013 ( NB there will be a re-fresh of this exhibition in October to include new work produced at Kew)
David Nash

David Nash ©
Open daily from 9.30 am, no extra charge
See all of Marianne North’s original paintings in their full glory, after two years of painstaking conservation work.

Painted by Marianne North. RBG Kew ©

Please note that between the second half of March to June some areas of the gallery will be temporarily closed for exhibition installation. Please check the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art web pages, or tel: 020 8332 3622 for further details.


  1. Thank you so much Jess - this is exactly what I needed so will bookmark. Definitely will see my essay subject Marianne North's exhibit - will mean a lot to me. Am in London for the SBA exhibit so getting quite excited about seeing these works. A great help xx

  2. Thanks Jess, really hope I can make it in april too! I saw the Shirley Sherwood collection exhibit in Oxford about 4 years ago(ish!) but would love to visit Kew. Wales is so far away sometimes!(and I'll have to try and bunk off work :) - thats always good tho')
    Hope your dip portfolio is progressing well
    xx Happy new year too xx

  3. Although I will not be on the DLDC again until July, I will certainly head for the SBA show and always enjoy taking the tube out to Kew. Lots to see, as always.