Banksias Vol III
21.6cm x 30cm
Early in her artistic career Celia Rosser began painting the uniquely Australian wildflowers with which she was intimately acquainted. In 1965 her first exhibition at Leveson Gallery in Melbourne included three watercolours of banksias. In 1967 she published her first book Wildflowers of Victoria. Rosser's talent for botanical illustration was immediately recognised and her reputation for artistic and accurate depictions of Australian flora grew. She is now among the world's finest botanical artists and is recognised internationally for her banksia paintings. The works reflect her total commitment to both technical excellence and aesthetic presentation, and her paintings rank alongside such botanical greats as W.H. Fitch and the Bauer brothers. In 1977 she was awarded the coveted Jill Smythies Award for Botanical Ilustration from the Linnean Society of London, and in 1966, the Medal of the Order of Australia (O.A.M.) for her contribution to botanical art. In 1981, Monash University honoured her artistic achievement by awarding her an honorary Master of Science degree and in 1999 an honorary PhD. Rosser's attraction to the genus Banksia began near her home in country Victoria when she first saw Banksia serrata, coincidentally one of the four banksias first discovered by Sir Joseph Banks in Botany Bay in 1770. The unusual and distinctive flowers captivated her, and undaunted by the difficulty of depicting the intricate flower spikes consisting of hundreds of inflorescences, she decided to paint it. Rosser accepted the position of Science Faculty Artist at Monash University in 1970. In this capacity she illustrated Peter Bridgewater's The Saltmarsh Plants of Southern Australia and also George Scott's and Ilma Stone's The Mosses of Southern Australia. In 1974 she was appointed University Botanical Artist to paint every known speciea of Banksia. Her love for Banksia's has continued throughout her life, and with the publication of Volume III of The Banksias she has completed this gigantic twenty-five year task.