Inside The New York Botanical Garden

Ross Gallery

A Last Look at The Photography of Allan Pollok-Morris

Posted in Exhibitions on March 12 2014, by Matt Newman

Allan Pollok-MorrisWalking through the Ross Gallery on my way to the office each morning, I like to pause a moment and admire the greenery clothing the walls. There’s no vertical garden on display, per se. Rather, the photography of Allan Pollok-Morris is so verdant as to come close to imitating one. His compositions of Scottish countrysides, estate gardens, and landscape sculpture depict a depth of color and foliage that we seldom see on the left side of the Atlantic, and there’s a grandeur to each image that belies the “humble ruggedness” many default to when discussing Scotland.

Sadly, after months of lovely display here at the Garden, Close: The Photography of Allan Pollok-Morris will be moving on as of this Sunday, March 16.

To give you a refresher of what you’ve been missing out on if you haven’t yet made a stop to see this photo exhibition, I put together a slideshow of some of Allan’s iconic works hanging now in the Ross Gallery. Each photograph depicts the landscapes, sculptures, or gardens of a designer living or working in Scotland—natives and expats alike.

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Close: Scotland Through the Photographer’s Eyes

Posted in Exhibitions on October 24 2013, by Matt Newman

CloseAny time I pass through the Ross Gallery these days, there’s a near guarantee that I’ll run into a couple of visitors stopped by their own curiosity, admiring Allan Pollok-Morris’ prints. The images are arranged on either side of the room in a mosaic of landscapes and architecture, depicting a Scottish countryside seldom seen by those living on this side of the Atlantic. Terraced hills and labyrinthine beach tracings mingle with cottage gardens in a stirring together of different styles by myriad artists, all of which you can see on the pages of the exhibition’s inspiration, Close: Landscape Design and Land Art in Scotland, now available in our Shop in the Garden.

The book itself builds bridges across eras, capturing the old and the new in a landscape known for its mercurial weather and geography—as much rain and unforgiving stone as green pasture and sunlight. We caught up with Allan in our Native Plant Garden during his visit to New York City, part of a well-documented national tour of the country’s gardens that has taken him clear across the continental United States. In his many years photographing gardens and landscapes by renowned international artists, he’s come to his own conclusions on what makes for a grabbing landscape experience, and what will likely be most important to garden design in the future.

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Close: The Photography of Allan Pollok-Morris

Posted in Exhibitions on October 7 2013, by Matt Newman

CloseI haven’t traveled to Scotland yet, but in my thoughts it’s a green and airy place, textured with the golems of mountains, cairns, and foggy grasslands. Admittedly that’s a romantic generalization better left to youthful misconceptions. But there’s still something to that old notion when I view the landscapes in Allan Pollok-Morris’ atmospheric photographs, prints of which are now being hung in The New York Botanical Garden‘s Ross Gallery. From what I’ve seen so far, the opening of our visiting Close exhibition should be an escape for any visitor.

Inspired by the outdoor art installations, gardens, and sculpted landscapes that multinational artists have wrought throughout Scotland’s challenging country, Pollok-Morris’ set out over the course of five years to meet these creators and photograph their lasting contributions to the world around them. But the name of the exhibition, “Close,” might warrant a deeper explanation for those without the benefit of a Scottish upbringing.

“No one collective description can be applied to the wide variety of subjects in this group,” Pollok-Morris writes. “Instead, when choosing a name, I opted for a small, unassuming word which, in Scottish dialect, was used to describe a landscape so inspirational that heaven seemed closer to earth in that place. For example, I grew up in MacGregor country, where it is said the most famous member of this clan, Rob Roy MacGregor, was buried in Balquhidder because he had described the glen as ‘close’.”

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Nature’s Pharmacy: An IGPOTY Exhibition

Posted in Programs and Events on August 15 2013, by Matt Newman

Each year, thousands of photographers from around the world venture out with cameras in tow—into their gardens, their backyards, their local greenmarkets, and the wilderness at large. They all have the same goal, of course, though their subject matter often differs wildly. They’re after one of the most prestigious nature photography prizes out there: The International Garden Photographer of the Year award.

International Garden Photographer of the Year

For the 2012 judging, The New York Botanical Garden—the exclusive U.S. partner of IGPOTY—threw its hat in the ring with a special photo category geared toward therapeutic plants, challenging friends, fans, visitors and photographers from all over to capture the very plants and garden imagery that we now feature in our Wild Medicine exhibition. Alongside a cash purse and global recognition, the awards for taking top honors in this challenge included a featured place in our “Nature’s Pharmacy” gallery exhibition, viewable now in our Ross Gallery.

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Magnificent Trees of The New York Botanical Garden

Posted in Exhibitions on December 24 2012, by Matt Newman

Magnificent TreesLarry Lederman’s eye for the aesthetic of branches, creased bark, and the leaf’s palette is well-trained, though photography wasn’t his first calling. What was initially a hobby came about late in his career as a Wall Street lawyer, at a time when escaping the office to the relative peace and simplicity of the NYBG‘s Forest seemed a panacea for New York City’s stresses. Here, he found through a lens what many artists chase for years–a muse that inspired through each of the four seasons, well beyond autumn’s changing leaves or the new growth of spring.

That inspiration has grown to encompass more than a hobby, with Lederman’s passion for the trees of the northeast now captured in a new book, Magnificent Trees of The New York Botanical Garden. Inside, you’ll find more than 200 individual photographs of trees growing in our 250-acre landscape, many of which have been captured repeatedly, in the varied lights of spring, summer, fall, and winter. Lederman’s finished effect is one of passing time, outlining the qualities and personalities of the trees as the project plays out.

Speaking with Mr. Lederman, we put together a clear idea of his motivation’s origins, as well as how this book–and the exhibition surrounding it–came together.

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