The ten year survey Fruiting Bodies included works from the art exhibitions Ripe, A Better Nectar and take me to the apple breeder at Sturt Haaga Gallery at Descanso Botanical Gardens in 2019-2020. Programming included

  • Native Bee lecture, walk with Jessica Rath and composer Robert Hoehn about native bee research
  • elkology educational sign projects, with area CSU-LA, Occidental and ArtCenter students
  • Fruiting Bodies Forages, with ecological systems engineer nance klehm led specially designed plant forages
  • Bee Song Master Chorale Performances–World renowned CSU-Long Beach Chamber Choir performed a special arrangement of Resonant Nest Score

Site specific works for Descanso included many Bee Projects. Learning that over 100 different native bee species reside in Descanso’s 165 acres, I created a series of site specific works to illuminate the life of these tiny creatures including Bee Hotels, the bronze Bee Nest and vinyl display of Bee Windows.




Bee Hotels, 2019
Jessica Rath and Robert Hoehn
My collaborator Robert Hoehn and I created The Bee Hotels, wooden homes for the solitary-dwelling bees for Descanso Gardens with variable holes depths and entrance widths to encourage one of the native bees to take nest. After testing six sites throughout the garden, we found leafcutter bees lining their new homes for babies.









Bee Nest, 2019
Jessica Rath and Scott Katano
Bronze, oak
Bee Nest is a coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia), sourced at Descanso Gardens and embedded with bronze portraits of native bee nests. The profile of leafcutter and carpenter bee nests shows how many native bees place their young in small holes tunneled into logs and hollow reeds.




Bee Windows, 2019
Drawings by Jessica Rath
Illustration by Val Echavarria, Casa Marengo Studios
Vinyl by David Johnson, Leafcutter Studio
This irrisdescent vinyl installation of five native California bee species was based on drawings from specimens at UC Riverside’s Entomology Museum.





Comb Cycle, 2019
Jessica Rath and Akemi Ki
Bronze and wallpaper
With Comb Cycle, we consider how the life of a honeybee – a migratory worker for American industrial agriculture – is inextricably linked to ours.