Oklahoma-based artist Trisha Thompson Adams gracefully adorns the human body with blossoming flowers in her striking series of floral anatomy illustrations. Though delicately rendered in an ethereal style, each piece also explores dark themes like death and mortality.
Created with colorful oils and watercolors, Adams’ peculiar paintings add an element of enchantment to traditional medical illustrations. Like illustrations found in anatomy books, the series presents a range of human body parts, spanning bones, skulls, and organs. However, unlike drawings that are strictly clinical, Adams’ pieces overflow with botanical elements. Flowers sprout from a realistic brain, buds spring from a heart, and bouquets inhabit ribcages. In most instances, the body parts are painted in greyscale tones. These muted colors are offset by the pastel flora, creating a unique and experimental color composition. In other cases, Adams sets the polychromatic organs against a dark backdrop.
The striking contrast between the blooming botanical elements and the detached body parts is what makes it all so fascinating for Adams. “I’m inspired by things that are full of life and full of death,” Adams explains in her artist’s statement. “A large portion of my works focus on the harmony between humans/animals with nature, often intwining flora with the human body and other earthly and celestial elements. I’m continually exploring the depths of life, death, and rebirth.” This paradoxical focus culminates in an oeuvre that is as illuminating as it is artistic.