To be a Flower

Bloom – is Result – to meet a Flower
And casually glance
Would cause one scarcely to suspect
The minor Circumstance
Assisting in the Bright Affair
So intricately done
Then offered as a Butterfly
To the Meridian –
To pack the Bud – oppose the Worm –
Obtain it’s right of Dew –
Adjust the Heat – elude the Wind –
Escape the prowling Bee –
Great Nature not to disappoint
Awaiting Her that Day –
To be a Flower, is profound
Responsibility

 

Emily Dickinson, J1058 (1865)/F1038 (1865)

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To be a flower series surveys the themes of death and femininity to explore the powerful space between beauty and decay.
The artist customarily reshot and separated from their owners’names the original female portraits affixed to tombstones collected from graveyards in Urbino and Venice.
Anonymous and decontextualized, the porcelain portraits are often chipped, scored and abraded and show various states of decay and age.
In the same way cut and artificial flowers, used to decorate graves, are photographed and paired with the memorial portraits to create a series of diptychs that probes the intertwinement of transience and growth and speak to the cycle of life and the inevitability of decay.

Flowers embody both the beauty and the impermanence of life, becoming symbols of faith and mortality and floral elements have symbolized femininity throughout art history, conveying opulence, verdancy, and life.
The connection between feminine bodies and floral details establishing a visual reminder to symbolic and ideological constructions that associates women with nature, based on dualistic epistemologies of Western culture.
Within these sepulchral diptychs the process of decomposition, hidden behind silent faces and fading flowers, operate as a reminders of the inevitability of death and the futility of attempts to dominate nature.

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