Arts Everyday Living: May, Beautiful May—A Festival of Flowers in Art




Here’s a festival of flowers for the month of May by a variety of artists: French Impressionists Claude Monet (1840-1926) and Berthe Morisot (1841-1895) plus their fellow countryman Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904); American Impressionist Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874-1939); and other 19th century painters such as Danish realist Michael Ancher (1849-1927); Russian innovator Ivan Kramskoy (1837-1887); and British  Pre-Raphaelite John William Waterhouse (1849-1917).


Frederick Carl Frieseke, Girl in Blue Arranging Flowers, c. 1915, oil on canvas, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

A flower blossoms for its own joy.

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)


Ivan Kramskoy, Bouquet of Flowers, 1884, oil on canvas, Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia

Surely the flowers of a hundred springs are simply the souls of beautiful things!

Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942)


Michael Ancher, A Girl with Sunflowers, 1889, oil on canvas, Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen, Denmark

The flower that follows the sun does so even in cloudy days.

Robert Leighton (1611-1684)


Claude Monet, Sunflowers, 1881, oil on canvas, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York

People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.

Iris Murdoch (1919-1999)


Berthe Morisot, Young Woman Watering a Shrub; 1876, oil on canvas, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, Virginia

God will reward you, he said. You must be an angel since you care for flowers.

Victor Hugo (1802-1885)


Henri Fantin-Latour, Poppies, 1891, oil on canvas, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia

Deep in their roots, all flowers keep the light.

Theodore Roethke (1908-1963)


John William Waterhouse, The Soul of the Rose, 1908, oil on canvas, Private Collection

Perfumes are the feelings of flowers.

Heinrich Heine (1797-1856)













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