Mushrooming: An Illustrated Guide to the Fantastic, Delicious, Deadly, and Strange World of Fungi (Hardcover)

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Mushrooming: An Illustrated Guide to the Fantastic, Delicious, Deadly, and Strange World of Fungi By Diane Borsato, Kelsey Oseid (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Diane Borsato, Kelsey Oseid (Illustrator)
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Staff Reviews

"I started thinking about mushrooms when I was out for hikes and saw unusually-shaped or -colored mushrooms.  During the spring and fall you find mushrooms in planters, on logs, popping up through leaf litter and anywhere nature finds a way-and they seem almost magical. The first mushroom that ever made me take a second look was the fly agaric, it looks a lot like a comic book idea of a mushroom.  I also love the ghost pipe (or corpse plant).  It's so strange looking and while not a fungi, it lives in conjunction with the fungi nutrient networks below ground.  I will probably never be able to identify the differences between the chicken of the woods and the hen of the woods, but I love the sight of a mushroom that looks like the very idea of a mushroom. 

Mushrooming by Diane Borsato is a lovely, lushly illustrated book that makes you want to put on a jacket and go on a leisurely walk to see what you can find outside.  The illustrations by Kelsey Oseid make the fungi more alive on the page than a simple photo and Borsato's storytelling brings each entry to life.  The author warns us that identification of mushrooms is complex and should not be taken lightly, since some may be full of toxins from the environment or toxic unless cooked. This is definitely not a guide to identifying edible mushrooms, but more like a primer for experiencing the joy of morel hunting. Now I can't wait to find a reishi or puffball or another fly agaric."--Reviewed by Jennifer


An illustrated guide to over 100 types of mushrooms, offering insights and stories about these mysterious organisms

An incredible diversity of fungi is flourishing all around us, not just in the forest but in parks, markets, and even museums. Once you know how to look, you can find mushrooms named after fairies and demons, mushrooms that look so much like woodland birds they are shot at by hunters, mushrooms that glow in the dark . . . and so much more.

Beyond serving as a guide for identification, Mushrooming explores how “the quiet hunt” can radically expand our perspectives, connect us to nature, and enrich our lives. Whether you’re a beginner forager or an expert mycophile, this is the perfect handbook to spark your curiosity and deepen your appreciation for the fantastic, delicious, deadly, and strange world of fungi.

About the Author

Diane Borsato is an award-winning artist exhibited in galleries and museums internationally. An associate professor at the University of Guelph in Ontario, she teaches advanced courses in experimental studio.

Kelsey Oseid is an illustrator, author, and amateur naturalist. Her gouache illustrations focus on natural history and astronomy. She lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Praise For…

“This curious compendium of all things fungi will be welcomed by amateur mycologists, avant-garde artists, intrepid woods trampers, cautious cooks, and even armchair readers. . . . The illustrations alone, saturated with eye-pleasing, earthy colors, are worth the price.”Booklist

“A delightful, eclectic, and enjoyable tour of mushrooms and their place in our world . . . This is a book that isn’t afraid to mix the personal with the practical and will thrill many readers because of that.”—Tristan Gooley, New York Times–bestselling author of The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs
Mushrooming is, in every way, a delightful book.”—Eugenia Bone, author of Mycophilia

“Amid ‘shroom boom,’ this book is ripe for the picking. . . . Mushrooming, which celebrates more than 120 different kinds of fungi through stories and art, takes a different tack than a traditional field guide. For one, Borsato isn’t a mycologist – she’s an artist. So the book explores not just individual mushrooms, but contemporary art and projects that embrace them.”Globe and Mail
“Every turn of the page in Mushrooming reveals surprising delights, between the eye-catching illustrations, cleverly quippy commentary, and insightful background information. Whether you’re the sort to dig in the dirt in search of mushrooms, are considering your next gastronomic adventure, or are simply eager to learn more about the natural history of our fungal friends—this book will speak to the mycologist in everyone.”—Emily Graslie, creator of The Brain Scoop and ART LAB on YouTube and host/writer of Prehistoric Road Trip on PBS
“Absolutely terrific. This is a volume that, at first glance, is a field guide. But peering closer, as every mycologist knows, brings reward. Borsato’s species descriptions are bright and lyrical; accompanying caps and stems rendered lovingly by Oseid. From art to culture to food, Mushrooming is a celebration of the human relationship with fungi.”—Jonathan C. Slaght, author of Owls of the Eastern Ice
“I want to live in Diane Borsato’s brain. What a joy it is to experience the fruiting bodies of her deep wide intellect in this book about mushrooms, art, forests, feminism, poison, pasta, and so much more. This is my favorite kind of fence jumping, perspective shifting, deliciously illustrated, eloquently enquiring, radically alive book.”—Kyo Maclear, author of Birds Art Life
“There is a worldwide resurgence of interest in fungi, so Mushrooming arrives at a perfect time. . . . Diane Borsato’s tales of mushroom hunters, the gouache renditions by Kelly Oseid, and, yes, the culinary side of mushrooms (choose them carefully!) combine to make this book a delightful adventure from beginning to end.”—Jay Ingram, author of The Science of Everyday Life
“Fungi are an order so mysterious they push our wonder and horror buttons simultaneously. In Mushrooming, Diane Borsato uses her radical curiosity to consider what they have to teach us about interconnection, the diversity of life, and the wildly creative possibilities of risk and attention.”—Shary Boyle, artist
Mushrooming is as much about identification as it is about finding wonder in all that surrounds us. Borsato frames the silent hunt through art, ecology, spirituality, ethics, and access. A guide unlike any other, this book is a must for artists, nature lovers, and anyone looking to find more magic in the world around them.”—Jen Delos Reyes, director and founder of Open Engagement

Product Details
ISBN: 9781615199587
ISBN-10: 1615199586
Publisher: The Experiment
Publication Date: February 28th, 2023
Pages: 240
Language: English