Titled after Darwin's characterization of the enigmatic spontaneity apparent in the evolution of flowering plants, filmmaker Brett Milspaw's
"Wonder is that state of the mind in which the senses or apprehension are more satisfied than the understanding, in which there is a conviction contrary to the usual train of our thoughts and conclusions. It is indicated in the countenance by an eager stare, the mouth being a little open, as in earnest attention. When combined with admiration, a smile plays upon the cheek."
- Sir Charles Bell 1774-1842,
Video and Images by August Blum
Original Music by Louis Stephens
Text by Max Jansons
Flowers are a gateway to the intimate. Their effortless perfection and beauty provide a way to see and feel the world on a deeper level. When I encounter a flower, a door is opened. I am drawn in to a moment of engagement that is outside of myself. My fears fall away, and I am allowed to experience the world how I feel that it is meant to be: a place of joy and wonderment.
Having Grown up in New York City in the 1970’s and 80’s, flowers were few and far between. Amidst the grit of the city, if I saw one, it was like a special gift. I would push my face in front of it and I would be transported. I will never forget that feeling: being allowed to leave, if even just for a moment, and feel life without anxiety and fear.
I was only able to truly understand my appreciation for flowers when I fell in love. I began to paint flowers after I met my wife, and I continue to do so every day. I look at each flower that I paint as a gift to my wife. It celebrates the intimate connection that we have and allows me to share my experience of life with her.
When I give a flower a connection is formed: I share a deep experience with another, bonding us in our humanity. By painting flowers, I am able to both give and receive them, tying myself more intimately with what they are and the connection that they provoke. I myself, symbolically create flowers and through this, I understand my place in this world on deeper and more sensual levels. Each stroke that I paint allows me to experience the magic that flowers inspire and the intimacy that they represent. When I paint I am never without flowers and that makes my life worth living.
Sketch book available for sale. $1075
An exclusive cookie by Burrow for Régime des Fleurs
A handcrafted sablé cookie, meticulously decorated and scented, inspired by the tradition of Dutch Baroque floral vanitas painting and the Victorian interest in floriography.
Blossoms of lilac, stargazer lily, rose, orchid, tuberose, pansy, and daffodil are delicately rendered and evoked through an original flavoring of bergamot, almond, bitter orange, and elderflower.
Though popularly associated with Greco-Roman cultures, libation bowls - or phialae - originated in the Near East.
900 BC to 700 BC
3" (7.6cm) high x 12" (30.5cm) depth
An ongoing series of images by Rachel Chandler
Wadjet eye amulets were worn from the beginning of the Old Kingdom to the end of the pharaonic era to protect against the evil eye. This amulet represents a human eye with its brow, but the two lines below are identified as the facial markings of a falcon.
1600 BC to 1100 BC
4.25" (10.8cm) high
The facial features on this Pre-Columbian stone mask have been gracefully reduced to simple lines and curves. There is a clear and compelling stylistic parallel between this object and early 20th century modernist artworks.
300 AD to 700 AD
8.125" (20.6cm) high x 10.25" (26.0cm) wide
The region of Etruria (central Italy today) yielded an elaborate culture that is now known, among other things, for bringing the Greek influence to Ancient Rome. The Etruscans were well known for their freestanding terracotta sculpture, of which this is an outstanding example. This bust of a female with watchful eyes is framed with waves of hair and a crown of petals.
600 BC to 400 BC
An original work by
Régime des Fleurs and Chloë Sevigny
In the Greek colonies of Southern Italy, known in antiquity as Magna Graecia, unorthodox forms and painting styles were seamlessly merged with the standard Greek style, creating distinctive works unique to the Hellenistic world.
This terracotta funerary vessel comes from the region of Canosa, named after the ancient city in northern Apulia.
The pastel hued paint that decorates the surface of Canosan ceramics reminds us what a vibrant and colorful place the classical world really was. Rarely do more than traces of the paint survive the ravages of time, making the extensive pink and yellow hues that decorate this vessel as remarkable as they are beautiful.
This large container features a swollen belly with three spouts and a central handle. An appliqué female face - a deceased relative? a Goddess? - sits on either side. Similar works were typically interred as burial offerings to provide for the deceased throughout eternity.
400 BC to 300 BC
18.75" / 47.6cm high
Behold, I am toward God as you are; I too was pinched off from a lump of clay (Job 33:6).
The graceful, unadorned design of this footed vessel excavated from Jericho presents a fine example of Biblical-era pottery.
1900 BC to 1700 BC
5" / 12.7cm high
Mirabelle Marden presents a series of deceptively sparse videos that evoke the visceral fragility of the human body and plant life through dance-like repetition and poignant movements. A bouquet of bright pollen-laden lilies beat against Marden’s white clad body, velvety fat rose heads spill from her chest – a quiet violence and stark sensuality both more uncomfortable for their iPhone framed starkness. Tucking herself into a tangle of vines or caressing a gash in a shiny houseplant, Marden’s dry visual humor belies a severe physicality that induces a shiver of identification in the viewer.
This vessel is carved from prized alabaster that was quarried from a known site by the Valley of the Kings in ancient Thebes. This temperamental material was particularly valued for its fleshy hues and glowing translucency. The combination of the small scale and the precise craftsmanship suggests that the vessel was intended to hold a cosmetic preparation such as ointment, kohl or perfume.
The Ancient Egyptian appreciation for luxury items and emphasis on grooming and hygiene were imbued with a reverence that exalted those processes to almost spiritual acts.
2200 to 1800 BC
1.75" / 4.4cm high x 1.675" / 4.3cm wide
"It was not until the eighteenth century that a concerted effort to systematically retrieve the glories of lost civilizations began." - Cybele Gontar on the Neoclassical movement.
Recalling Venusian figures in white marble, this modest object perfectly encapsulates the spirit of Neoclassicism.
Late 18th / early 19th century
5" / 12.7cm diameter
This carved vessel excavated from the verdant jungles of Honduras depicts two snarling Jaguar masks with defined fangs and tongues and is further decorated with a series of swirling serpentine patterns rendered in low relief. To the Maya and their near predecessors, feline figures symbolised the elite ruling class. This vessel is thought to have been used in ceremonial rites, most likely containing sacred hallucinogenic potions or the blood of a sacrificial victim to be consumed by a king or a shaman.
500 AD - 900 AD
7.25" / 18.4cm high
by Juliana McCarthy