Mimosa (Sensitivity)

Teresa Franks

The Language of Flowers

In 1819 a "Mme de la Tour" published a floral dictionary called The Language of Flowers in France. It was widely acclaimed and quickly imitated, resulting in multiple variations of definitions. Steeped in the history of floral languages in which individuals could speak without words, Teresa Frank builds on the lexicography that enabled shy lovers to freely express their affection, rivals who subtly insulted one another, and where ladies in-waiting received clandestine messages from secret lovers. Using this as a starting point, she reinterprets these flower meanings lexically and visually. Close-up views yields abstraction, allowing the viewer to focus on form, texture, and color instead of the traditional "portrait" of a flower.