Photorealistic Butterfly Mural is a Tribute to Artist’s Childhood Love of Nature

Versailles Mural by Mantra

French street artist Mantra brings his mother's garden to Versailles with a mural titled Where Amazement Blooms. Mantra is known for his paintings of the natural world, and for this mural, he was inspired by the plants, flowers, and insects he saw growing up. Based on photos taken in his mother's garden, the realistic mural shows butterflies perched on different flowers.

The location of the mural makes the subject all the more appropriate. It was painted on the facade of a building in the Jussieu neighborhood of Versailles. This area is named after French botanist Bernard de Jussieu (1689–1777), which allows Mantra's mural to take on a deeper meaning.

For the French artist, the painting is greatly personal. It recalls his childhood memories—memories that have inspired his profession as an adult. Within the painting, he has tried to create a harmonious balance of elements that mirrors the harmony that he sees in our ecosystem. Just as these insects and plants rely on one another, each element of the mural builds on itself.

The mural is also effective in mimicking the bokeh effect of Mantra's photographs, which have a shallow depth of field. His ability to recreate this effect gives a photorealistic look to the finished piece. By combining his personal interests and artistic skills, Mantra has breathed new life into this area of Versailles.

For his mural in Versailles, French street artist Mantra was inspired by his mother's garden.

Detail of Butterfly in Mural by Mantra in Versailles

The piece is based on photos he took in the garden and is a reminder that his love of nature began in childhood.

Detail of Butterfly in Mural by Mantra in Versailles

The piece was painted in an area of Versailles named after a French botanist from the 18th century.

Mantra Painting Mural in Versailles

Photo: Aruallan

In the end, Mantra's photorealistic mural breathes new life into the area.

Versailles Mural by Mantra

Mantra: Website | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Just Kids.

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Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Staff Editor and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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