Jonathan Singer’s project ‘Botanica Magnifica’ – macro photographs of rare flowers and plants as a union between natural history and fine art.
“Botanica Magnifica seem to be alien life forms but really are true treasures of our home planet. As an artist, I capture the mystical energy that lies below the surface of the natural world. In the end we see not the infinite diversity of life, but rather we steal a glimpse into creation itself.”
“I’m trying to give the world a message, to warn the world that the ecosystems and food chains are breaking down. Hopefully, through this marriage of art, people will want to know the science. People say that’s so beautiful. What is it? Where is it from? What would we see in them if we didn’t know where they came from? Clouds? Fires? Waves? Landscapes? Galaxies? They start asking questions”
Set against a dark background and taken in low light, the flowers look suspended in space. Singer’s photographs have been compared, at least in style, to the works of Brueghel, Vermeer and Rembrandt because “they handle light better than anyone else ever did.”
“I started looking at flowers because of Jan Brueghel the Younger. In the rooms in his paintings there were flowers, and they were beautiful. In fact, that grabbed my attention more than anything else in the paintings—the lighting and the flowers.”
Two hundred and fifty of these remarkable photographs are collected in a book published by Abbeville Press.
The original edition of the book following the method used for Audubon’s “Birds of America” in the 1840s, was in extra-large “double-elephant” format consisted of five lavishly hand-bound volumes and limited to just ten copies. One of them was donated to the Smithsonian Institution and is on display in the rare-book room of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington.
To learn more about Jonathan Singer’s life path, his interest to photography and the creation of “Botanica Magnifica”, watch this video.
To date there is no official active site or social account in Jonathan Singer’s name.