Who doesn’t love flowers — especially in spring after a long winter. Where I live I see them in front gardens or window boxes, tree beds, the green-grocers or the park, bursting with life, reminding us of color and simple pleasures. But what enthralls me, or did so much so in 2007 that I did a series of paintings, is the juxtaposition of the two kingdoms—vegetable and mineral. Flora and fauna against the hard blackness of metal.
Specifically wrought iron. These two separate kingdoms co-exist lovingly in my Brooklyn neighborhood. They go together like Yin and Yang. The one so delicate and fragile, the other sturdy and stubborn. One seasonal, known to shrivel and die without the right balance of air, water and sun, the other tough as nails, lasting centuries.
I love the curvy rounded lines of this decorative fence. As if flowers and fence were made to go together, complementing one another. The iron work picks up the design and flow of the leaves and flowers. Such an all-of-a-peacefulness.
And what about these sunflowers. When looked at from a certain angle they all but dwarf the house behind them. There’s something wild about them, something almost chaotic, while behind are windows and doors laid out in perfect order and symmetry.
The Yin and Yang of Life. A reminder of the beauty and necessity of contrast.
One of the first things I learned in painting class was how a color came more to life when you put its opposing shade, aka its complementary color, beside it. Green looks more green when it’s beside red, and so on. The colorful softness and delicacy of a flower is more appreciated (at least by this city dweller) when placed beside a black wrought iron fence.