Elizabeth Blackadder

Iris Oncocyclus

About this artwork

In this painting, the artist used watercolours to capture the delicacy of the irises, as well as their vivid colour. A lifelong lover of flowers, Blackadder kept a collection of local flowers as a child, each pressed and labelled with their Latin names. Here, she depicts the irises from different angles with the precision of a botanical illustrator. Yet despite her painstaking attention to detail, the flowers look graceful and full of life. Irises were a favourite flower of the artist, and in 1979 she began keeping a sketchbook to document each variety as it appeared in her garden. Around this time, Blackadder was also a frequent visitor to Edinburgh’s Royal Botanic Gardens, where she helped to run a course in botanical illustration, which gave her access to rare and exotic plants.

Updated 2021

  • artist:
  • title:
    Iris Oncocyclus
  • date created:
    1996
  • materials:
    Watercolour and pencil on paper
  • measurements:
    56.70 x 57.00 cm
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    Bequeathed by Miss Michelle Proud 2002
  • accession number:
    GMA 4685
  • gallery:
  • subject:
  • photographer:
    Antonia Reeve
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Elizabeth Blackadder

Elizabeth Blackadder