From blooming yuccas to radiant desert sunflowers, wildflowers abound from March to June throughout the High Desert. Before you take that drive through those wildflower hot-spots this Spring, visit the Hi-Desert Nature Museum to view its Spotlight installment of “Mojave Desert Wildflowers.” The micro-exhibit features 25 color depictions of common Mojave wildflowers by renowned desert artist Henry B. Mockel and can serve as a resource for identification along the way. “Mojave Desert Wildflowers” will be on display all of Spring.
Henry B. Mockel (1905-1981) and his wife Beverly settled in the High Desert during the 1960s and opened the Pioneer Art Gallery in Twentynine Palms. Mockel is widely known throughout the United States for his botanically-correct serigraphs of desert plants and flowers. He and Beverly self-published a book, Mockel’s Desert Wildflower Notebook, which contains illustrations and descriptions of over 133 desert plants. His work has been exhibited at the Bowers Museum of Cultural Art, the Los Angeles Museum of Natural History, and the National Arboretum in Washington D.C. His work has also been published by Desert Magazine, the Smithsonian Institution, and the California Arboretum Foundation.
Serigraphs are the result of a fine arts process where ink is forced through a series of fine mesh silk screens. Some of Mockel’s serigraphs required forty-five separate layers. His attention to color and detail was astounding! The 25 serigraphs in this exhibit are part of a more complete collection that is cared for and managed by the Hi-Desert Nature Museum. All are limited edition and signed pieces. Henry Mockel only printed 100 of each design, then made sure to destroy his screens afterward.