Martin Johnson Heade. (1819 – 1904). Orchids and Hummingbird. (1875).
This painting of Martin Johnson Heade is remarkable by the beauty of the subject, the colors of the orchids and the hummingbird but also by the landscape with the background.
The composition is perfect because the painter leaves enough space between the hummingbird and the orchids so that the glance of the spectator plunges and is attracted with far. Although it is retained with before plan by the hot colors of the reason it does not fail to make. Moreover trees on the 2 sides form a V and guide the glance.
The point of view of the spectator is located well at the top of the horizon, on the level of the highest orchid.
The orchid of right-hand side is on 2 natural points of interest and 3 tension fields. The hummingbird is near 1 natural point of interest on the low tension field.
The sky and the vegetation occupy each one half of pictorial space.
The picture is built on the ascending diagonal which passes on the bird and between the 2 orchises. On the left and on the right the trunks and the branches form a V to guide the glance with far.
The pollination of the orchids is mainly carried out by the insects, in particular bees, bumblebees, etc, the butterflies, dipterous, various flies. Often a given insect pollinates only one and even species of orchid. Other animals intervene : various acarina and also of the birds like here the hummingbird attracted by the sweetened nectar of these flowers.
With far one perceives a mountainous mass, a valley and one guesses a lake or a river in his medium.
The hummingbirds are famous for their particularly swift flight : their beats of wings are so powerful and so rapids that they produce a buzz. The hummingbirds nourish nectar and small insects which they find in the flowers. Almost all the hummingbirds have a beautiful plumage with the metal reflections. The throat of the males is red, blue or green emerald, but always bright.
The painting seems enlightened left by a sun which is rather high in the sky.
Colors : Contrast between hot and cold colors.
Martin Johnson Heade.
Cattleya Orchid and 3 Brazilian
Martin Johnson Heade. Hummingbirds and Flowers of Passion.