Saturday, July 8, 2017

A Laurel Diploma

Touring the Uffizi in Florence through the eyes of an artist or a horticulturist can change every detail. A painter might see the brush strokes that define a generation or the different array of colors defining a single millimeter of canvas. A sculptor sees inches of time dedicated to bringing marble to life. A horticulture student observes the flowers, vines, fruits, and vegetables speckled throughout the artwork. One mere fruit can reflect upon ideas and concepts without words; pomegranates were a sign of fertility and abundance. A few paintings show baby Jesus holding a pomegranate as a sign of eternal life and rebirth. Caravaggio showed his skill as an artist in his famous Bacchus depicting an unidealized bowl of fruit and a man half dazed from his cup of wine. The fruit seems to be in an elegant disarray as grape leaves turn yellow from lack of potassium, a pomegranate splits open, and figs bruise to slowly rot. It was amazing to walk around the gallery and see more than complementary colors mixing together to please the eye. Each artist meticulously picked different vegetation to convey a message. The laurel headdresses brought a smile to my face as I passed by, for the beauty but also for the reminder of my impending graduation at the end of summer. In ancient Greece, it was a tradition to grant the victor of an event with a laurel headdress. While I may not have won an ancient Greek Olympic race, graduating from Texas A&M is a victory that should be awarded with a laurel diploma.

 Kristen Foxworth

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