Perfect for the Botanical Gardens in Atlanta, this giant head made of things from the garden.  Only this one is in the Dulwich Picture Gallery Gardens in London.


This one is in Atlanta.  They have also been displayed in NYC and in the Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix.

flowe head



four seasons, original and source

Any self-respecting art historian must stop in their tracks in seeing  this.  Great idea, but it has been done!  Good thing the source is mentioned in his artist’s statement.  Some are not.  The image above shows Giuseppe Arcimboldo’s 16th century paintings at the bottom, and Philip Haas’ huge sculptural copies in several locations in this country.

botanical artist statement


The following discussion is from Wikipedia:

“At a distance, his portraits looked like normal human portraits. However, individual objects in each portrait were actually overlapped together to make various anatomical shapes of a human. They were carefully constructed by his imagination. Besides, when he assembled objects in one portrait, he never used random objects. Each object was related by characterization.[2] In the portrait now represented by several copies called The Librarian, Arcimboldo used objects that signified the book culture at that time, such as the curtain that created individual study rooms in a library. The animal tails, which became the beard of the portrait, were used as dusters. By using everyday objects, the portraits were decoration and still-life paintings at the same time.[3] His works showed not only nature and human beings, but also how closely they were related.[4]

After a portrait was released to the public, some scholars, who had a close relationship with the book culture at that time, argued that the portrait ridiculed their scholarship.[citation needed] In fact, Arcimboldo criticized rich people’s misbehavior and showed others what happened at that time through his art. In The Librarian, although the painting looked ridiculous, it criticized some wealthy people who collected books in order to own them, instead of to read them.[3]

another librarian

So, nineteenth century painter Georges Seurat must have know about Arcimboldo’s work while creating his visual language of pointillism.  What is important to note about both of these painters is that they, whether fruit or dots, disappear when viewed at a distance.  That is the magic part.  And even further with Arcimboldo’s work, there was “content” as discussed above with “The Librarian”.


Look at the precision in this portrait made with fish.


These are painted images, not constructed.  They represent a whole different ball game than simply pulling three dimensional masses together.


Now this is just another kind of clever.





  1. I enjoyed The Scream more than the others. Whimsy is apparent in all of them but that apple looks very distraught.

  2. I disagree. Does something have to be original to be enjoyable? Clever and original or not I personally would enjoy seeing these assemblages in person. Do people who visually reference The Mona Lisa or American Gothic give credit for their inspiration? Many give their viewing audience a little credit and don’t feel it’s necessary to educate the world

  3. those who reference American Gothic or the Mona Lisa modify it in some way because the image is so iconic in our visual history. it is that modification which makes it an art statement. simply making a three dimensional copy of another’s work is not art. what was enjoyable was the size of these things. scale change can be interesting. thanks for commenting!

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