Between Folds / British Butterflies

Material: A History of British Butterflies by the Rev. F.O. Morris, B.A. Fifth edition; 1870.
129.5 x 85.5 cm
2012

Each plate in the 150 year-old book A History of British Butterflies is hand-painted, making every illustration entirely unique. In a jubilant fluttering of folds and wings, Francisca opens every page before us, collectively comparing the delicacy of each veined wing – colour graduating from earthy spotted brown to bright yellow and blue – alongside the tantalising chrysalis and its humble caterpillar. The inverted folds of text surround each image, closed like chrysalides themselves, which when opened into colour cast the letter ‘B’ – for every species of British Butterfly, many now extinct, and the abstracted shape of the magnificent wings themselves.