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Detail, “The Entombment of Atala” (1808) by Anne-Louis Girodet de Roucy-Trioson, from

BACK IN STOCK! Jean-Michel Othoniel's 'Secret Language of Flowers' in the Louvre

This detail of “The Entombment of Atala” (1808) by Anne-Louis Girodet de Roucy-Trioson—with its tree-carved inscription translating roughly, "I passed like the flower... I dried like the grass of the field"—is reproduced from The Secret Language of Flowers: Notes on the Hidden Meanings of the Louvre’s Flowers, the petite, clothbound follow-up to Jean-Michel Othoniel’s beloved and beautifully produced collection of flower-related imagery in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. “Trumpet vine, once called Indian Jasmine, was introduced to Europe in the seventeenth century,” Othoniel writes. “It originated in tropical regions. There, its red trumpets offer their sweet nectar to hummingbirds. In France, these flowers are the glory of Provençal gardens. In painting, they symbolize the exotic and the passionate; the sensual shape of their flowers evokes male erotic tension. Their winding creepers represent attachment to an infinite love, stronger than death.”

Jean-Michel Othoniel: The Secret Language of Flowers

Jean-Michel Othoniel: The Secret Language of Flowers

Actes Sud
Hbk, 5.25 x 8.25 in. / 192 pgs / 162 color.

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