Strawberry and Midnight Beauties
oil on masonite
5 x 7 inches
I painted this on the night of the Strawberry Moon on the Summer Solstice. It is a sun and moon painting. I chose to pair the strawberry, representing the full moon, with grapes, because I was thinking about Galileo's famous quote: The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent on it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do.
After observing and conducting experiments on specimens of the Madagascan orchid Angraecum sesquipedale, also known as the "Comet Orchid" or "Christmas Star Orchid," Charles Darwin predicted in his 1862 book Fertilisation of Orchids that there must exist a moth with a proboscis capable of reaching the nectar at the bottom of the spur, which he described as having an "astonishing length." Alfred Russell Wallace supported Darwin's hypothesis in 1867, and hypothesized further thatXanthopan morgani, or Morgan's sphinx, an African hawkmoth, would be a likely candidate. Darwin didn't live to see the verification of his early prediction, but in 1903 Morgan's sphinx moths were found to coexist with the orchids in Madagascar. First called Xanthopan morgani praedicta, the moth's discovery was an exciting event in the history of natural science.
Donate $15 a month to Books of Kell's Pressand receive a handmade accordion-style album bound in beautiful bark paper with space to collect up to ten 3x5-inch beetle prints. Pages are made of black watercolor paper with photo corners to attach new prints. Continue your monthly donation, and as a special thank-you I will send you a new beetle print every three months or less, depending on your contribution level.
Prints will arrive four or eight times a year depending on your monthly contribution level. New beetles are being added regularly. Start now to collect them all!
Each print is signed, numbered, and hand-illuminated with iridescent watercolors and/or shell gold. There are only 50 prints available of each design, with only a few remaining prints left of the rarest ones. You can choose the prints you want, or be surprised!