Linda Saul - Broken Rose

Broken Rose

The concept behind this lily is that the pointless locking away of a genius was a great loss to the world. The dark exterior of the lily is meant to suggest the oppression of Reading Gaol. Within the lily the gold pen and paper clips represent Oscar, and the interior of the petals his writing. I chose the story of the Nightingale and the Rose, which ends with the rose being run over by a cartwheel. I didn’t have a cart to hand so I substituted a Fiat 500 to find out what a run over rose would look like. Interestingly the rose ‘bled’, but remained surprisingly intact. I incorporated a photo of the rose into the image for this lily. The rose could also represent Oscar’s heart, he once wrote to his lover Bosie “my heart is a rose which your love has brought to bloom’.

C.3.3’s ballad

This lily is a response to The Ballad of Reading Gaol. C.3.3 is Oscar’s prison number, and the pseudonym he used when the ballad was first published. The dark rivulets are meant to be suggestive of the brutality and suffering of the prison regimen. CTW are the initials of Charles Thomas Wooldridge whose execution is narrated in the poem. The gold pen for the stigma represents Oscar and the stamen are prison bars.

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