sunflowers by vincent van gogh, recreated in real life by makoto azuma

Van Gogh, Picasso, Redon and Renoir. Almost every great painter in history has been fascinated with flowers as a subject for still-lives. And some of the most famous of their paintings depict simple flowers. So what did these artistic minds see in the bouquet? This is the question that led Japanese flower artist Makoto Azuma on an investigative series. And for the past 3 years he’s been creating exact replicas of famous flower paintings but using real flowers.

wildflowers in a long neck vase by odilon redon
vase of flowers by pablo picasso
roses in a copper vase by claude monet

Azuma’s real-life flower bouquets of famous paintings naturally took on an element of time as his creations would wilt. Now, in a collaboration with the Pola Museum of Art in Hakone, Azuma has recreated 3 bouquets from paintings housed in the museum’s collection: one by the French impressionist Auguste Renoir, another by the French painter Odilon Redon and a third by the Japanese painter Kuroda Seiki.

 Azuma filmed each bouquet and then created a composite video that begins with the painting and then morphs into the actual bouquet as it begins to wilt. The exhibition, titled “Drop Time” is on display at the Pola Museum of Art now through March 17, 2019.