Redon returned to the subject of flowers many times throughout his career. His interest in plants may have been inspired by his friend and mentor Armand Clavaud, a botanist and illustrator who lived in Redon's hometown of Bordeaux.
Known for his dark, velvety charcoal drawings and lithographs, Redon began working predominantly in oil and pastel after 1900, thus enlisting color in his explorations of the world of dreams and the imagination. Like other Symbolists, Redon searched for alternative experiences beyond the rational logic of Naturalism and Impressionism. He used his knowledge of botany as a starting point for this painting, but infused the flowers with heightened luminosity and sensuous form.
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