Influences: Ernst Haeckel

Besides Gosse, another stimulus for the increased interest in marine invertebrates was the work of Ernst Haeckel (1834-1919), an influential German zoologist and evolutionist.

Haeckel, one of whose areas of research was marine biology, became a friend of the Blaschkas and loaned them books from his library. Some of his scientific drawings provided preparatory material for a small number of the Blaschka's models.

Biologists may know Haeckel for his statement "Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny," but the general public is more familiar with his stunning drawings of related biological groupings reproduced in Art Forms in Nature, published in sections from 1899-1904. The amazing forms depicted in this book had a significant influence on decorative design at the time, and the illustrations are considered a landmark of applied art.