In my blog post i want to talk about naturalist Maria Sibylla Merian, whom i find quite fascinating and inspiring. Reading about her life trajectory and accomplishment can be encouraging.
My first introduction to Maria Sibylla Merian was my IASK 107 class, seen for first time some of her drawing. Maria Sibylla Merian “also known as Anna Maria Sibylla, was born April 2, 1647, Frankfurt am Main, Germany and died Jan. 13, 1717, Amsterdam ( reference).” Maria Sibylla Merian was a naturalist and also a scientific illustrator, her stepfather Jacob Marrel was her “artistic trainer.” (reference) At the age of 16 Maria Sibylla Merian got married Johann Andreas Graf. She published several books. After Maria Sibylla Merian got married she kept on painting.
At her time interest in insect wasn’t looked necessarily as a good thing. She was able to go beyond all that “schema”of her time allowing her to do detail work of the life cycle of
hundreds of insects. Maria Sibylla Merian published some books. A lot of scientists of her time ignored her work because it wasn’t written in Latin. Women at that time and age were not allow to paint with oil, what forced Maria Sibylla to use other materials for her paintings. She was the one who funded her expedition to Suriname by selling more than 200 of her paintings. This expedition allow her work to become more detail per say. One of the reason that i find her fascinating, besides all her beautiful work, is her strength and determination. Ignoring “the norms” of her times and doing what was important or matter for her. Maria Sibylla Merian was poor when she died.