Women as flowers. Too sweet, isn’t it?

As I promised a few posts back, I am showing some more works by Victor Dynnikov to illustrate the Brevity is the soul of wit concept I talked about here,

This painting shows flowers and a female model at the back. The painting is glassed, so the photograph also sports a dim reflection of me, taking it. Apologies.

Why is it a good painting?

Ars Longa Gallery

Thousands of images metaphorising women into flowers have been produced since the walking stick of St.Joseph sprouted lilies. That’s how Mary got to know whom to marry.

It is difficult to paint a woman and flowers in a way that would not be  so overwhelmingly sweet that it would be bordering on vulgarity.

Few artists can pull off the trick.

In this seemingly simple work the model is almost merged with the red flowers of passion (and this merge occurs at the head level), while her body is paired against more tender flowers to the right. There is a dialogue going on between the shapes of the body and flowers, and the outlines of figures as well. This dialogue is meant to make the viewer think of natural passion, natural tenderness, and the natural brevity of beauty and youth, but without venturing into the eroticism of a naked female body. Immanuil Kant, who believed that real art should not arouse physical passions, would be proud.

A very clever cat comes later today, so please stand by.


  1. Women as flowers trope is directly derivative of the vagina imagery; the idea of women’s flower-like ‘delicate-ness’ was the other half of the concept of chivalry, which in itself was a behavioral framework that made the social structure of women being property of their fathers and husbands more palatable to the evolving mores.

    1. That may well be so, especially since the Victorian times when flowers became fashionable, but the Christian view of the lily is different )) what with the petals standing for purity and yellow anthers signifying the golden soul of the virgin )

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