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In Voller Blüte: Die wundervoll falschen Blumen der Carmen Almon

In Full Bloom: The Beautifully Fake Flowers of Carmen Almon

When Carmen Almon invites you to her estate in Bordeaux, it's not the impressively high ceilings or the romantic stucco on the walls that impress visitors. Rather, it is the filigree plants that can be found everywhere. For example, poppies and autumn anemones that seem to literally grow up on their white marble mantelpiece - or the cherry blossom branch on a sideboard in the hallway.

Carmen Almon grows her own flowers. But not, as is usually the case, with a shovel, fertilizer and gardening gloves. She doesn't even need soil or water. No, the French artist breathes life into a “botany” of shiny copper, metal wire, lacquer and colors in an impressive way. Hyper-realistic plant sculptures are created in Almon's studio in the most elaborate manual work, which look confusingly similar to their relatives in the adjacent garden.

Only by touching the viewer does the optical illusion become apparent, which also works almost perfectly thanks to randomly placed insects such as butterflies, beetles or a grasshopper. It goes without saying that such sophisticated creations have their price: private collectors and galleries all over the world cost the filigree works of art up to 40,000 euros.

Before trying her hand at being Mother Nature's artistic double, Carmen Almon used pen and paper to record her observations. Eventually she traded this familiar tool for sharp cutters, pliers and nail scissors, with which she turns copper wires and plates into fine root networks and wafer-thin petals.

In order to recreate everything as realistically as possible, Almon often studies the flowering object. She swaps her workplace in the studio for a field or her own garden. She spends up to three months meticulously working on a new piece. The result is plants and flowers that even a bee would probably not recognize as fake at first glance.

Photos: via