Berthe Hoola Van Nooten: Discover Her Stunning Botanical Illustrations

Berthe Hoola Van Nooten: Discover Her Stunning Botanical Illustrations

Berthe Hoola Van Nooten was a Dutch artist and illustrator best known for her botanical artwork. Her detailed illustrations of flowers and plants were widely sought after by collectors and art lovers. Hoola Van Nooten's work is characterised by its precise attention to detail and soft and delicate colour palette. She is most well known for her illustrated collection, Fleurs, Fruits et Feuillages Choisis de l'Ile de Java, a set of 40 stunning illustrations depicting the botanical species in the Indonesian island of Java. Let's take a closer look at the life and work of this remarkable artist.
Berthe Hoola Van Nooten was a Dutch artist and illustrator best known for her botanical artwork. Her detailed illustrations of flowers and plants were widely sought after by collectors and art lovers. Hoola Van Nooten's work is characterised by its precise attention to detail and soft and delicate colour palette. She is most well known for her illustrated collection, Fleurs, Fruits et Feuillages Choisis de l'Ile de Java, a set of 40 stunning illustrations depicting the botanical species in the Indonesian island of Java.
Let's take a closer look at the life and work of this remarkable artist.
Amherstia Nobilis Wall by Berthe Hoola Van Nooten included in Vintage Botanical Illustration Volume. 1

What Was Hoola Van Nooten's Background?

Berthe van Dolder, daughter of a Dutch vicar, was passionate about botany. She met her husband, Dirk Hoola Van Nooten, in the Netherlands, and they moved to Suriname, South America, where he worked as a judge. She explored the vast flora and fauna found throughout Suriname and sent botanical samples back to the Netherlands. The couple immigrated to the United States, establishing a school for girls in New Orleans; however, tragedy struck in 1847 when Dirk died of yellow fever, leaving Berthe alone to raise their five children. She moved to Louisiana and then Texas, setting up schools in each state. Several court orders due to disputes with creditors arrived at her door - prompting another relocation, this time abroad to the island of Java where she applied for government funding to establish a Protestant girls' school. 
Berthe Hoola Van Nooten died in Jakarta in 1892. 
Oil painting portrait of Berthe Hoola van Nooten by M. Calisch

What Inspired Hoola Van Nooten to Publish Her Artwork?

With a large family to support, Hoola Van Nooten began teaching drawing classes using the local flora and fauna for inspiration. This inspired her to create an artistic masterpiece to celebrate it; Fleurs, Fruits et Feuillages choisis de l'île Java: peints d'après nature. This book of 40 exquisite plates depicts plants from throughout the region with detailed descriptions in both French and English describing their distinctive features, history and uses. This magnificent work is dedicated to Hoola Van Nooten's patron, Queen Sophia Mathilde of The Netherlands, who helped arrange its publication. 
Lagerstroemia Regia Roxb  by Berthe Hoola Van Nooten included in Vintage Botanical Illustration Volume. 1

Why Are Hoola Van Nooten's Illustrations So Special?

Java's vibrant plant life is beautifully displayed on a large, true-to-life scale. This enormous botanical work includes an array of indigenous and imported greenery alongside 16 lifelike portraits of edible fruits. It was designed as a reference for botanists interested in species of all types, from the Mexican poinsettia to fruits like bananas, pomelo, rambutan, mangosteen, and custard apple, and no detail was overlooked. The book measures a staggering 22.5 inches tall to accommodate the life-size images. 
Musa Paradisiaca  by Berthe Hoola Van Nooten included in Vintage Botanical Illustration Volume. 1

Interested In Learning More?

Read more about Berthe Hoola Van Nooten on NYBG.
Enjoy her beautiful illustrations and hundreds more in our pictorial archive Vintage Botanical Illustrations Volume.1 
Discover more stunning botanical illustrations in our titles Vintage Botanical Illustrations Volume.2 and Flowers and Plants
Citrus Decumana  by Berthe Hoola Van Nooten included in Vintage Botanical Illustration Volume. 1

Monsters and Beasts

Interested in learning more? Get Monsters & Beastsvia paperback and eBook. This title features hundreds of exquisitely crafted 17th and 18th-century etchings and engravings of monsters and beasts. This pictorial archive features serpents, animal mutations, sea monsters, dragons, griffins, chimeras, bizarre human mutations and abnormalities, extraordinary fanciful animals and much more.

Image Download Included: Each book comes with a download link providing instant access to high-resolution files of all images featured. These images can be used in art and graphic design projects, or printed and framed to make stunning decorative artworks. This book is ideal for graphic designers, illustrators, tattooists and fine artists.