Emma Ulen–Klees: Traces

Three white embossed flower patterns lightly shaded on a white background.

Hypericum kalmianum (2018), embossing, 11" x 15".

Traces, by Emma Ulen-Klees (M.F.A. '20), is an ongoing project cataloging plant species that are thought to be extinct in the state of New York. Each species is researched and rendered after a physical specimen from the Liberty Hyde Bailey Herbarium or C. V. Starr Herbarium of the New York Botanical Garden. Despite their detail, these embossings capture only a shadow, a shallow impression of the species it represents, preserving its form while acknowledging its absence. When viewed together, these absences serve as a reminder of our fragility within our constantly changing environment.