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The Filoli Florilegium

Camellia japanica 'Destiny'Camellia japonica ‘Destiny’
by Sharron O’Neil.

The Filoli Florilegium began in 2000 and is a growing collection of original botanical art depicting the plants from the grounds of Filoli. The purpose of the Florilegium is to document the plant materials of Filoli within an historic perspective, using traditional methods of botanical illustration. While the artwork is created by contemporary artists, the style is classic in presentation. The Florilegium adds to the archives of historic information about Filoli and is a unique addition to the Filoli Permanent Collection. To date there are twenty–seven origianl pieces of Botanical Artwork in the collection.

The Filoli Florilegium Guild is comprised of artists, jurors and advisors. Filoli is fortunate to have some of the best contemporary botanical artists participating. Artists for the Florilegium are juried in annually, have access to plant specimens from Filoli and generously submit their completed works for acceptance into the permanent collection. The artwork and copyright will become the property of Filoli, which is committed to honoring these beautiful works as valuable components of the educational and culturally enriching environments at Filoli.


The Florilegium jurors are a group of accomplished professionals with expertise ranging from botany and scientific illustration to rare and collectible botanical art. The jury meets two times a year to review applicants, policy and finished artwork for acceptance into the permanent collection at Filoli. The 2010 jury committee is comprised of the following members:

  • Molly Barker, Executive Director at Casa del Herraro, Montecito
  • Josephine Arnold, Arader Galleries, San Francisco
  • Sally Chess, Botanist
  • A. Kristin Jakob, Botanical Artist
  • Jim Salyards, Manager of Horticultural Collections, Display and Education, Filoli
  • Jenny Keller, Scientific Illustration Program Instructor, CSU at Monterey Bay


The Filoli Florilegium advisorsÂ’ understanding and knowledge of this art form was instrumental in the formation of this collection. They continue to be a source of professional support and wisdom. They are:

  • Anne–Marie Evans – one of the most influential botanical art instructors currently teaching
  • Jenny Philips – artist and Director of the Botanical Art School of Melbourne, Australia
  • Shirley Sherwood – author, collector and international advocate for botanical art


Cathy Rampley, Head of Education, Filoli


The Florilegium Guild artists are experienced botanical artists who work in the traditional media of watercolor, graphite, colored pencils and pen and ink. Admission to the Filoli Florilegium Guild is obtained by submitting an application and a portfolio to the Florilegium jury for review. Those artists accepted become part of the guild with the commitment that they will finish and submit, as a donation, two pieces of artwork to the Filoli Sterling Library. Artists choose subjects from a list that includes important plants from the four different historic eras at Filoli: indigenous plants, plants from the Bourn era, plants from the Roth era and plants from the National Trust era. Additional artwork and continuation on the project may be requested by Filoli.

Participating Florilegium Artists:

  • Nina Antze
  • Margaret Best
  • Carolyn J. Cappello
  • Jean Emmons
  • Susan T. Fisher
  • Maria Cecilia Freeman
  • Pria Graves
  • Irene Horiuchi
  • Sally Jacobs
  • A. Kristin Jakob
  • Lee McCaffree
  • Sharron O’Neil
  • Sally Petru
  • Jenny Phillips
  • Lizzie Sanders
  • Louise M. Smith
  • Jessica Tcherepnine
  • Catherine M. Watters

For more information about the Filoli Florilegium, including a project overview and application to become a guild artist, please contact the Education Office:
Phone: (650) 364-8300, extension 233.