...with their striking contrasts of brilliantly lit flowers and leaves set against a dark background, are among the most original still lifes of the 19th century. They are also for many observers strongly sensual, their lush colors, full, curving contours, overall sense of opulence, and implied perfumed scent of the flowers suggestive, perhaps, of female nudes languidly reclining on luxurious couches."
This painting of a Giant Magnolia is one of about a dozen variations. The series, in which the white blossoms are often placed on a velvet cloth, are rendered as sensually as a female nude and are among the most original still lifes of the 19th century. (http://arteverywhereus.org/Art-Gallery/id/39)
In 2004, Heade was honored with a stamp from the U.S. Postal Service featuring his 1890 oil-on-canvas painting, "Giant Magnolias on a Blue Velvet Cloth."
magnoliastill lifeflowervelvetoil on canvas