Arts Butanica at the Walled Garden

A delicate painting by botanical artist Tina Bone
A delicate painting by botanical artist Tina Bone

A unique exhibition featuring the work of 22 of the country’s top botanical artists opens at Luton Hoo Walled Garden tomorrow (October 30).

It’s being organised to mark the tercentenary of the Garden’s founder, the 3rd Earl of Bute – 18th Century prime minister, patron of the arts and keen botanist.

Most of the stunning collection on show portrays plants that Lord Bute grew at Luton Hoo or depicts the styles of artists he supported.

Co-ordinator Charlotte Phillips said: “This is a significant year for us. It’s the 300th anniversary of the birth of the 3rd Earl who bought the estate in 1763 and commissioned Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown to create both a landscape and walled garden – the one we enjoy so much today.

“We are very excited to have so many tops artists featured in the exhibition, giving us some idea of what was growing here in the 1770s.”

President of the Society of Botanical Artists and co-organiser Sandra Armitage said: “Botanical art has experienced a huge renaisaance.

“Five of the exhibitors have been awarded the much-coveted Royal Horticultural Society gold medal.

“To see so many paintings by artists of this calibre is a rare opportunity that I hope visitors will enjoy.”

The exhibition runs until November 6 and on Friday Maureen Lazarus from the National Museum Wales will talk about Lord Bute’s botanical studies.

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