Collage of Joseph Hooker's drawings and correspondence
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Joseph Hooker: Putting plants in their place

To mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of one of Victorian Britain's most important scientists, Joseph Hooker (1817–1911), Kew is holding an exhibition of a selection of his photographs, journals and paintings.

Event details

25 March to 17 September 2017, 10am to 5.30pm
Venue: 
Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art
Price: 
Included with entry to the Gardens

Event overview

About Joseph Hooker

Joseph Dalton Hooker (1817-1911) was a tireless traveller and plant collector, a founder of modern botanical classification and a close friend of Charles Darwin. Kew was at the heart of Hooker’s career and he helped add thousands of specimens to its collections. Hooker believed that botany revolved around putting plants in their place: collecting and classifying them, better understanding their habitat and creating a place for botany to elevate its scientific status. To mark the 200 years since his birth, this exhibition seeks to commemorate the life of an influential pioneer of botany by exhibiting an eclectic range of journals, artefacts, paintings and sketches owned and drawn by Hooker himself. He once told a botanical collector at Kew to 'practice drawing incessantly', advice he certainly took himself. This exhibition takes a closer look at the impact he had on Kew and on the wider botanical world.


British Artists

A separate exhibition of Shirley Sherwood's collection of botanical art by British artists will run concurrently in the Gallery.

British Artists in the Shirley Sherwood Collection


A series of tours and talks takes place during the exhibitions


Gallery tour by Dr Shirley Sherwood – Wednesday 5 April 2017, 2.30pm

More about Dr Sherwood's gallery tour

Exhibition tour of Joseph Hooker: Putting plants in their place – Thursday 27 April 2017, 12 noon

More about the tour of the exhibition

Conservator's talk – Thursday 18 May 2017, 12 noon

More about the conservator's talk

  • Tours are free although booking is essential as places are limited
  • Please call 020 8332 3622 to book a place

Admission to The Joseph Hooker: Putting plants in their place exhibition is included with day entry to the Gardens. 

Save on the price of your ticket when you book online