The botanical world has been a big influence on photography throughout history

Gerhard Stromberg, Coppice (King’s Wood), 1994 © Gerhard Stromberg / Into the Woods

A new exhibition at the V&A museum explores how trees have inspired photographers around the world.

Featuring images of trees from renowned photographers like Ansel Adams, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Agnes Warburg, the exhibition charts photography from its inception to the present day.

Tree photography has a long history at the museum as it was among the first photographic subjects collected by the V&A as a resource for artists and designers.

Tokihiro Satō, Hakkoda #2, 2009 © Tokihiro Satō, Courtesy Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects / Into the Woods

The exhibition precedes the V&A’s plans to open a new photography centre at the museum in autumn, 2018.

Some highlights of the collection include an early example of manipulated photography made in 1839 by Johann Carl Enslen and recent work by Tokihiro Satō in the forests of the Hakkoda Mountains in Japan.

The display also marks the 800th anniversary of the Charter of the Forest, signed in 1217 by King Henry III, to protect the rights of free men in England to access and use the Royal Forests.

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Into the Woods: Trees in Photography runs in Gallery 38a from November 18 until April 22, 2018. It is drawn from the V&A’s permanent collection and the recently transferred Royal Photographic Society collection.

Check out some of the featured photographs in our gallery below.


Tal Shochat, Rimon (Pomegranate), 2011 © Tal Shochat / Into the Woods


Gustave Le Gray, In the Forest of Fontainbleau (Bas-Bréau), 1852 © Victoria and Albert Museum, London / Into the Woods


Ansel Adams, Aspens Northern New Mexico 1958, © Ansel Adams / Into the Woods


Mark Edwards, Rotting Apples from the series What Has Been Gathered Will Disperse, 2004 © Mark Edwards / Into the Woods


Royal Engineers, Cutting on the 49th Parallel, on the Right Bank of the Mooyie River Looking West, about 1860 © Victoria and Albert Museum, London / Into the Woods


Alfred Stieglitz, Poplars, Lake George, 1932 © Alfred Stieglitz, Gift of the Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation / Into the Woods


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