De Chirico’s artichokes
We don’t eat many thistles, but we do eat Cynara scolymus, a.k.a. the globe artichoke. Mediterranean native, member of the thistle family, and deliciously sculptural.
Melancholy of an Afternoon (1913) by the Italian artist Giorgio de Chirico is one of my favourite painterly representations of globe artichokes.
This painting, which usually hangs in the Centre Pompidou in Paris, is currently on show at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, part of their Surrealism: The Poetry of Dreams exhibition which runs until 2 October 2011.
If you’re hungry for a taste of the exhibition, but can’t get to Queensland (or France) to see the original, you can always order De Chirico’s artichokes as a fridge magnet from the gallery shop.