The language of symbolism has always formed the basis of of Rose’s work, influenced predominately by her time in east Arnhem Land where story telling through painting was prevalent and later with the study of Persian art at university. Flower symbolism formed the basis of my still-lifes, originated in the orient it then flourished thereafter in the western world. There are hundreds of flowers with particular meanings; even dictionaries and books have been dedicated to their symbolic meaning. Each bud nestled in the vase will represent the personality of the sitter.
These works uniquely became Wilson’s trademark in the early 90’s, aptly named her ‘still life portraits’ where instead of a figure being represented in the painting each flower, trinket and item told the story of the sitter to be unraveled by the voyeur. “With these still life’s I endeavor to tap into the viewers curiosity, inviting them in, then challenges them to unravel it’s secrets”.
These still-lifes were painted early in her career as an artist but played an important role in Wilson’s work today. “All of my still lives were constructed with rich textural backgrounds; bold stylized imagery and bright primary hues, which was quite predominate in most of my early paintings.