Inverted color image of a scientific illustration of plant parts.

Dark Botany

The Herbarium Tales

The Herbarium Tales book cover

Edited by

Prudence Gibson, Sigi Jöttkandt, Marie Sierra and Anna Westbrook

Download open access pdf from Open Humanities Press

Dark Botany activates the material and sensorial wonder of plants—their energy, their mysterious allure, their capacities and skills, their independent might. In this Wunderkammer of critical plant studies essays and plant+artworks, the herbarium emerges as a site of multiple materialities and reflexive forms of counter-narrative. Herbaria specimens come alive as assemblages, telling truths about their dark histories and darker contemporary currents, while reflecting on the complexity of texture, movement, memory, compound structure, chemical emissions and rapid evolution of plants and languages. What one discovers is that herbaria are not static: they are as vital, energetic and enigmatic as the plants in their collections—and as diverse.

With contributions by Giovanni Aloi, Matthew Beach, Tamryn Bennett, Edward Colless, Prudence Gibson, Ryan Gordon, Lisa Gorton, Sigi Jöttkandt, Nick Koenig, Verena Kuni, Anna M. Lawrence, Vanessa Lemm, Rebecca Mayo, Aunty Deirdre Martin, Arina Melkozernova, Elaine Miller, Jacob Morris, Anna Perdibon, Anna Madeleine Raupach, Georgina Reid, Heather Rogers, Betty Russ, Erica Seccombe, Marie Sierra, Christina Stadlbauer, Anna-Sophie Springer, Bart Vandeput, Juliann Vitullo, Anna Westbrook and Maya Martin-Westheimer.