UM Botanist Has Exhibition at University Museum

Photos depict landscape and plants of Rowan Oak

Muscadine Grape Arbor and Log Barn in Fog by Ed Croom. Pigment print on loan from artist.

OXFORD, Miss. – Photographs depicting the flora and landscape of Rowan Oak, shot by University of Mississippi botanist and pharmacognosist Edward Croom Jr., will be on display beginning Thursday, July 18 at the University Museum.

“Faulkner’s Rowan Oak is a special sanctuary revealing the changes, mystery and beauty of the land,” Croom said. “Quoting Rumi, ‘Beauty surrounds us, but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.’”

The opening reception is set for 1-3 p.m. Sunday (July 21). In conjunction with the exhibition, an artist’s lecture is slated for noon Sept. 5. The exhibit will remain on display at the museum through Sept. 14.

“Ed Croom’s stunning images of the Rowan Oak site constitute a remarkable documentary project and are compellingly beautiful examples of the art of landscape photography,” said Robert Saarnio, museum director. “The University Museum is exceptionally pleased and proud to present this first public exhibition of Dr. Croom’s work.”

Since 1976, Croom’s ethnobotanical research has documented through field notes and photography what may be the last widespread use of herbal remedies and the collection of wild foods in the Southeastern United States.

“The Intimate Landscape of Rowan Oak,” which documents the plants and landscape of William Faulkner’s house and grounds for a decade, is the first museum exhibition of his photographs.

Croom, who has a doctorate in botany, conducts research documenting the traditional uses of plants for food and medicine as an adjunct associate professor of pharmacognosy in the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy.

The University Museum is at the intersection of University Avenue and Fifth Street. Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. General admission to this exhibition is free to the public. To book a tour, contact Emily Dean, curator of education, at esdean@olemiss.edu.

For more information, go to http://museum.olemiss.edu/ or call 662-915-7073.