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POISON: Opium Poppy

Poison Vespertine Series: Carnivorous Plants & Night Blooming Flowers

  • Ended
  • 165 British pounds
  • Online


Service Description

We need to recognise these poisonous plants so we know what we’re dealing with. One person’s poison is another person’s medicine. Lastly, the opium poppy is equally famous for its flower as well as its seedhead. We'll paint both. Ah, opium. What a history - and a personal one for me too because of my roots in Hong Kong and its association with the dark Opium Wars. It was the inspiration for Coleridge's Kubla Khan and while poisonous, I also know of people who took opium to counteract the effects of malaria. Poppy seeds are also a popular ingredient in Central and Eastern European baking. There are nursery rhymes about it. I'm reconciling myself with this complex history by recreating an opium bed with my husband (see the Dome painting at It goes without saying of course - don't be an Opium Eater, and don't stick it in your pipe and smoke it! For more info and images, join the free forum at

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