To pause or resume slideshow, hover near top of image.
“I am trying to generalize about the globe thistle and it is my koan. I began to see it as crystal, substantial, round and yet no shape. That must be much of why it has held me, as yet unrealized, in thrall. Alternative realities. I have only just realized how truly God has answered prayer that I understand where painting fitted in — it is God and only to the extent that I realize Him in it can I succeed.”
- Polly Thayer (Starr), Journal, 1991
At the age of 87, Thayer undertook one of the most precise and poetic projects she had ever attempted, an infinitely delicate sequence of pencil drawings depicting the life cycle of that under-appreciated flower, the thistle. In the more than two dozen pieces that comprise it, all drawn directly from nature, no shadow falls between vision and reality: they are equally literal and metaphysical.