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Face with Dahlia to lips, black latticed pattern overlay, THE POETRY OF THE BEE IRIS ROMBOUTS in white and red font on black border

Iris Rombouts

Poetry of the Bee

By (author) Iris Rombouts


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  • This book celebrates the bee in all its humble glory, and does so in a completely original way
Full Description

It has long been a dream of art director Iris Rombouts to produce an art book that sheds new light on our familiar surroundings and our daily food in particular. And what better way to do that than with the bee, the most important creature to humans on earth? Not only is this small insect indispensible to our food chain – it pollinates over 80% of all flowering plants and 70 of the top human food crops – but it is also a source of inspiration for architects, writers, artists and even whole cities. This book celebrates the bee in all its humble glory, and does so in a completely original way. With a preface by author Jeroen Olyslaegers.

We see the bee represented by old masters and contemporary artists, by insectobsessed Renaissance man Jan Fabre, by Joseph Beuys and his Honey Pump and by Tomás Libertiny with his beeswax sculptures. There is the ceramic piece of art ‘The Wall’ by Carla Arocha and Stéphane Schraenen, with its repetitive structure that reminds of a honeycomb. Fashion, too, is represented: designer Harm Van Zwolle chose the bee as his muse, proving that the beekeeper s outfit can become a covetable piece of clothing.

The book is as multi-faceted as the eye of the bee. It pays homage to Maurice Maeterlinck, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, who tells the most inspiring tales about the life and death of the bee. It explores the mythical powers of the Apis Mellifera, and invites passionate beekeepers from all over the world to share their vision and show that there is much more to the bee than honey. The book also explains how the beehive inspired architects Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright to create stunning buildings that will impress many generations to come. As readers, we explore the feather-light steel building ‘The Hive’ by Wolfgang Buttress, and travel to Manchester, the city that chose the bee as its symbol and has shown to be every bit as courageous and resilient as the insect itself. All these weird and wonderful stories are accompanied by the work of talented photographers such as Stephen Mattues, Diego Franssens, studioEAST, Mark Haddon, Stephen Goodenough, Joao Sousa, Filip Van Roe, Wout Hendrickx and Iris herself. With this book, Iris Rombouts has created a joyful, brilliant mix of stories, photography and art, with the bee as the well-deserved star of the show.

Exhibitions International
21st Dec 2018
Paperback / softback
United Kingdom and Ireland
300 mm x 230 mm
208 Pages
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