Bouquet of Flowers, ca. 1900-1905. Odilon Redon. Pastel on paper. Gift of Mrs. George B. Post, 1956.
As a young man, Redon was fascinated with Darwinian biology and enjoyed a close friendship with Armand Clavaud, the curator of the botanical gardens in his hometown of Bordeaux. In late floral still lifes such as this one, the artist demonstrated a naturalist’s sense of wonder as well as a richly inventive imagination, combining many different types of blooms and foliage in an effervescent display, attended by fluttering butterflies. The vase, which appears in a number of Redon's flower pictures, was made and presented to him by the ceramicist Marie Botkin around 1900.