The Language of Flowers 2013

What’s in a name? Well, plenty, according to the Victorians who took great delight in giving meanings to individual flowers so that they could send coded messages which otherwise could not be spoken. The language of flowers is known as floriography and there is an abundance of flora to which the Victorians attached meanings, signifying passionate love, sympathy, hope and even revenge. The Selection Committee was presented with a wide variety of interpretations of the theme and ardent researchers even found meanings which should remain hidden for propriety’s sake! Members and exhibitors researched their portrayals of plants with unusual Latin, common or nicknames, and cultivars which also convey meaning, sometimes personal to them. The discovery of plants throughout history to the present day has conjured up interesting names and meanings dependent on their appearance, medical properties, food value or growing habit.

As part of the educational requirement of the Society’s charitable status, over 700 works were shown, including miniatures and three-dimensional work, and Members demonstrated their various techniques throughout the exhibition. There was also selection of work by students participating in the Distance Learning Diploma Course, now in its ninth successful year, attracting students from both the UK and worldwide. The exhibition was also the venue for the launch of a revised seminal work featuring work by tutors and students, Handbook of Plant Forms for Botanical Artists. To purchase or view this book click here. The Society’s annual open exhibitions are held at Westminster Central Hall in Storey’s Gate, London SW1H 9NH, open daily from 11am to 5pm including Sundays. Entry is always free although visitors can purchase a beautifully illustrated catalogue as a guide. All work is for sale with the addition of top quality greetings cards, limited edition prints and members’ books for added temptation.

SBA Awards 2013

  • The President’s Award for work in other media
    Cash prize for work in media other than watercolour
    Winner: Rachel Munn SBA for Acanthus spinosus.
  • The Margaret Stevens Award
    For work reflecting concern for the environment
    Winner: Penny Stenning SBA for Garden Visitors.
  • The Joyce Cuming Presentation Award
    A legacy from Joyce Cuming – a sterling silver Almoner’s plate.  The winner receives a certificate.
    Winner: Fiona Wheeler SBA for Breadfruit.
    Highly Commended
    Julia Blower AssocSBA for Chrysanthemum ‘Tom Pearce’;
    Shevaun Doherty AssocSBA for Ripening Dates;
    Valerie Dugan SBA for Ornamental Corn;
    Rosemary Lindsay SBA for Shoofly Plant;
    Kate Nuttall SBA for Greater Reedmace;
    Akiko Sato for Pokeweed;
    and Julia Whelan DipSBA for Honeysuckle with Male Ruby Throated Hummingbird.
  • The Margaret Granger Memorial Silver Bowl
    In memory of Margaret for the best picture by a member elected in the last two years.
    Winner: Norma Gregory SBA for the body of work especially Coltsfoot Seed Head
  • Great Art Award
    For an outstanding exhibit. The winner chooses £500.00 of materials from the Great Art catalogue
    Winner: Annie Soudain SBA for body of work
  • Daler-Rowney Award
    A wooden boxed set of Daler-Rowney Artists’ Watercolours
    Winner: Janet Pope AssocSBA for Potato Growth Cycles I–III
  • Derwent Award
    For an outstanding work in a pencil medium. The winner receives chooses £200.00 of materials from the Derwent catalogue
    Winner: Linda Hampson AssocSBA for Lily ‘Stargazer’
  • St Cuthberts Mill Award
    The St Cuthberts Mill Award of paper for good use of watercolour paper
    Winner: Julia Trickey AssocSBA for Leaves from Bath Botanical Gardens
  • Suzanne Lucas Memorial Award
    In memory of Founder President Suzanne Lucas
    Winner: Robert McNeill AssocSBA for Abies koreana ‘Carron’
  • Certificates of Botanical Merit
    Selected by independent judge Victoria Matthews BSc FLS DipTax for their botanical accuracy.
    Karen L Bailey AssocSBA for Agapanthus umbellatus ‘Alba’ Seed Head.
    Gill Cann AssocSBA for Chinese Lanterns.
    Sheila Etchingham SBA for Veltheimia bractaeus.
    Norma Gregory SBA for Rheum.
    Asako Kuwajima SBA for Prunus x yedoensis.
    Robert McNeill AssocSBA for Abies koreana ‘Carron’.
    Sally Pond for Brambles.
    Ann Sheppard for Acanthus.
  • The People’s Choice
    An anonymous donation of £100 for the favourite picture in the exhibition as voted for by visitors
    Winner: Robert McNeill AssocSBA for Abies koreana ‘Carron’