Art Forms in Nature
Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (1834–1919) was renowned as one of the foremost early exponents of Darwinism. His work was credited with having caused the acceptance of Darwinism in Europe, and his popular studies ― preaching the continuity of all life, organic and inorganic, from prehistoric time to the present ― converted tens of thousands of readers all over the world. Today, although no one is greatly interested in Haeckel the biologist-philosopher, his work is increasingly prized for something he himself would probably have considered secondary. These are the remarkable plates with which his work was illustrated, particularly his famous Kunstformen. The Kunstformen contains 100 beautiful lithographic plates which show a multitude of unusual life forms: Radiolaria, Foraminifera, and other forms of microscopic life; jellyfishes, starfishes, calcareous sponges, star corals, barnacles, and other sea life; mosses, lichens, red algae, ferns, fungi, orchids, and other plants; and turtles, moths, spiders, bats, frogs, lizards, hummingbirds, and antelope. With many drawings on each plate, each carefully drawn from nature, the subtle details of nature's art forms are easily compared and appreciated.
In addition to being marvelous renderings, these plates have long been noted for the peculiar emotional appeal that they have for most viewers, a premonition of surrealism with exotic organic life forms stretching back to their roots in the inorganic, and individual details drawn with awareness of subtle evolutionary changes and millennia-long developments. Artists, illustrators, and others will find them still powerful as one of the landmarks of applied art.
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algae animals and plants animals marine animals animals related beauty caption class as hydras class of marine class of Protozoa crabs diatoms a type drawings ERNST extinct allies familiar family of hydroid ferns flagellates Foraminifera a type FORMS frogs genus Haeckel hydroid polyps identification living in colonies lizard marine animals living marine Protozoa moss animals marine moths NATURE Nº º º ae º Nº º º º º sº order of jellyfishes organisms plates PUBLICATIONS PUBLISHERS Radiolaria a type related to hydras ſae º scientific ſº sº º ſºſ species of crustaceans species of diatoms species of Foraminifera species of fungi species of moss species of Radiolaria species of Rhizostomeae species of sea-urchins species of Semaeostomeae species of Siphonophora species of star sponges star Corals starfishes subclass Tree type of marine type of unicellular unicellular plant Various species Various types Wºº