Artist MF Cardamone (American, b. 1958) approaches her work with the eye of a 19th-century botanical illustrator and the soul of a contemporary artist. Fluent in various media and techniques—including painting, sculpture, and limited-edition clothing—Cardamone discovered her passion for plants when she restored a garden at her then 75-year-old farmhouse near Philadelphia. She enrolled in the Barnes Foundation Arboretum School and learned to collect specimens and create herbarium sheets, documenting the many medicinal uses of plants, along with their history and landscaping potential. She treats each of her mixed-media artworks like a puzzle, juxtaposing the manmade with the natural. You might find a teapot, a key, or a clock in one of her creations, but their inclusion isn’t random. Cardamone links regional icons and social commentary with scientific information about specific plants, then embellishes the whole with insights and observations in elegant calligraphy.