This remarkably beautiful book, Natural Palette, has an intriguing history: In 1774 the wonderfully named German geologist, Abraham Gottlob Werner, developed a classification system by which he standardised the colours used to describe fossils, a little like the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus’s standardisation of flower names a few decades previously.
A few year later, in 1821 the Scottish botanical painter Patrick Syme took up Werner’s idea, amending and developing the system to embrace not only minerals (as used for the fossils), but also animals and vegetables. His extended work, published in1821, was entitled Werner’s Nomenclature of Colours.
To mark the bicentenary of Syme's publication, Patrick Baty has revisited the work of both men to produce an extraordinarily erudite and elegant book. Divided into five colour sections, Natural Palette catalogues colour in the natural world, illustrated with original, colour source material, from detailed 19th-century botanical and avian paintings to photographs of Georgian watercolour blocks. For example: 'Pansy Purple' is illustrated by the small bloody nosed beetle (animal), the sweet wood violet (vegetable) and blue john fluorite (mineral).
Both impossible to put down and impossibly beautiful, this volume is fascinating for anyone who loves colour, from interior designers to artists and all the colourists in between.
Patrick Baty is a world-renowned specialist who advises and lectures on paint and colour in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Format: Hardback, clothbound
Dimension: H:26.4cm, W:20.6cm, D:3cm
Illustrations: Full colour throughout, marbled end papers
ISBN:- 10: 0500252467
ISBN:- 13: 0500252468