Delicate Peony  - Anthony Van Lam

Anthony Van Lam

Delicate Peony 

60 x 60 cmWatercolour on Canvas
How good is it to be a desire by everyone especially men? Do you want to help your family to become wealthy? 

The process of foot binding took a length of 3 arduous years. It was not a pleasant journey for these young girls. Usually, at a very young age, they have to go through this painful process. This sacrifice is a result of hope, desire & greed. These ideals are drummed into their heads and they were often forced.

The promised results are - you will be fertile and you will give your family with lots of children, you will be desirable, you will be married into a wealthy family and your family will prosper from all your sacrifices. But most importantly by going through this process your delicate flower will be firm and ready for your husband to be and you will be desired as you will fully satisfy him. This sounds like a fairytale created by men and their needs to be in control.

I have chosen to paint peonies. As it can be delicates and beautiful. They symbolize the beauty of marriage and are often used in floral bouquets at weddings. Pink peonies can also represent love at first sight. Also in this painting, a young lady with status is standing behind dark heavy blood-red curtains. She is the only semi-exposed almost in hiding but she is clenching on the drapes. You can see her expression. Next to her a pair of lotus shoe on display stands and peony dancing around them. This represents her Golden status and how desirable she is. She shows strength and vulnerability at the same time!

Her beauty lies in her delicate peony!