Up Close

Rob Kesseler

Foreword by Jenni Lomax

Up Close showcases the career of artist Rob Kesseler, who is inspired by the exotic forms and luscious colours of the plant world and the way in which they infiltrate every aspect of our lives.

290 x 260 mm

208 pages


ISBN: 978-1-906506-07-0


Subject: Art & Design

The exotic forms and luscious colours of the plant world and the way in which they infiltrate every aspect of our lives have been a source of inspiration for Rob Kesseler throughout his artistic career. Using a wide range of familiar materials and objects, from ceramics to furniture and drawing to photography, he creates sensual sculptures and emblematic images that celebrate each subject in a uniquely personal way. Rob Kesseler: Up Close traces his career starting with his early work that explores the tensions between artifice and imitation and the paradoxes of representing nature through his ironic and humorous sculptures covered in familiar pictographic icons. After a transitional period in which decorative excess led to what he describes as the ‘martyrdom of ornament’, his most recent work reflects current enlightened thinking that seeks to exploit the benefits of collaboration between artists and scientists. Over the past decade he has worked extensively with botanical scientists at Kew exploring the creative potential of microscopic plant material. Following extensive media coverage after the publication of a collection of award-winning books Pollen, Seeds and Fruit, developed in collaboration with Madeline Harley and Wolfgang Stuppy at Kew, his work has found a global audience eager to discover more about this exciting world previously hidden to all but the science community.

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Rob Kesseler

Visual artist Rob Kesseler is University of the Arts London Chair in Arts, Design & Science. His long career has often used plants as a source of inspiration. In 2001 he was appointed NESTA Fellow at Kew. Since then he has worked with microscopic plant material. He was 2010 Year of Bio-Diversity Fellow at the Gulbenkian Science Institute, Portugal. His work has been shown in museums and galleries in the UK, Europe and North America, including solo exhibitions at The Victoria & Albert Museum, Kew Gardens and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon. He is a fellow of the Linnean Society and Royal Society of Arts.

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