Jo Golesworthy - A Dusting of Pollen

Jo Golesworthy

A Dusting of Pollen


Pollen grains of common wild flowers enlarged approx. X 10,000 in limestone compound


Location: Seal Courtyard, The Forum, Stocker Road, Streatham Campus

By reproducing pollen forms in an architectural material Jo Golesworthy illustrates a botanic world, ubiquitous yet invisible to the naked eye.
Pollen grains are the microscopic protective caskets conveying the male reproductive cells of flowering plants.

A wide variety of shapes and textures denote the identity of plant families, genera, species and even local variation.
Palynology is widely used in forensic science for criminal and archaeological investigation.
Pollen sizes range from 5 to 500 microns in diameter although most measure between 20 and 80. (1 micron is 1/1,000 of a millimetre.)  It was not until the development of the microscope in the seventeenth century that individual pollen specimens could be seen in detail. They can now be studied with the aid of scanning electron and light microscopy.
Find out more about the artist here.

Photograph: Common Mallow pollen sculpture © J Golesworthy

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