The RHS Beatrix Stanley Collection
Inspired by Lady Beatrix Stanley’s incredible floral watercolour studies found in the archives held by the Royal Horticultural Society’s Lindley Library, together with the iris that celebrates her famous name, contemporary ceramic designer, Nicola Slaney, committed herself to a brand-new pottery collection in honour of the talented gardener.
Born the youngest daughter of the Marquees of Headfort in 1877, Lady Stanley was able to ‘grow, propagate and distribute plants which baffled others’, and was generous with both her knowledge and skill, sharing unusual plants with other enthusiasts. She developed an extensive knowledge of bulbous plants from her own collection at Sibbertoft Manor in Leicestershire but likewise, became well-established as a horticultural authority in growing tropical varieties as she travelled the world.
Lady Stanley’s interest in using watercolours developed whilst she was in India, as she completed over 150 pictures of plants growing in and around the gardens she visited. The works found with the Lindley Library offer a sample of the extensive collection of paintings she produced during this time, each diligently noted with genus and species, locations and dates.
Respecting the botanical accuracy of the collection, Nicola, herself an acclaimed designer of over twenty years, conjured a vibrant but delicate homage to the captivating works of Lady Stanley. Made entirely by hand, using almost unchanged techniques from 1913, this pottery collection offers an insight into the meticulous artwork of an English propagator and writer from a time now gone from living memory.
A portion from the sale of each piece in the collection will go directly to the RHS.