Artist Statement

As long as I can remember, I have always loved plants.  I grew up in Birmingham, Michigan, where collecting and preserving plants was a family activity.  My education at the Cranbrook Schools enriched my appreciation and love of nature, and developed my awareness that science and art are closely related.  I graduated from the University of Michigan with a Ph.D. in biology and a passion for the scientific beauty of the natural world. Through research at the Basel Institute for Immunology in Switzerland and the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, I further advanced my appreciation for biological structures and their processes.

The experience of raising a family gave me the chance to answer my children’s seemingly simple questions about nature.  I reflected on their basic curiosity about the different structures and functions of plants:

Why do vines curl?

How do plants transport water to their leaves?

Why are hairs found on some plants and not on others?

I began thinking about structural similarities found in nature.  I discovered that the spirals of emerging fern fronds, the layers of petals in blossoms, branched veins in leaves, and the radial and bilateral symmetries of daisies and orchids were structurally significant and aesthetically intriguing.

My growing interest in gardening led me to observe more closely a variety of plants, from sun lovers to shade seekers, and wildflowers to cultivars.  Seeking to communicate the beauty I was seeing and the sense of wonder it was evoking, I studied photography to be able to interpret and communicate what I was experiencing.

As I cultivated plants and photographed them more intensively, I noticed that the forms I observed in flowers were found throughout the universe in spiral galaxies, branching rivers, layered rock formations, beautifully symmetrical organisms, and more.  I began to work on exhibitions that revealed this broader relationship found throughout nature, from a close-up portrait of a spiral flower to a satellite image of a hurricane.

Today I continue my work with the production of botanical photographic prints, some of which are printed as large, colorful floral portraits, and others as small, intimate images that reveal delicate blossoms and subtle colors.

In all, my focus remains the same: to share with others the magnificent beauty of nature.

Amy Lamb