Words by Jessica Peace
Édouard Manet, shoved a pink orchid in his model’s barnet for his painting ‘Olympia’ (1863). The painting caused an outrage in Paris as it seemed to celebrate the ‘demi-mondaine’ (a gal living the highlife via lovers with a bit of dosh). The orchid is one of the giveaway signs that this might be her bag.
In Raymond Chandler’s, The Big Sleep (1939) the orchids are a sign of the Sternwood family’s wealth. They flourish in the pricey hothouse that Humphrey Bogart gets a bit sweaty in, in the film version.
In the noughties the orchid is well looked after by James Spader during his ‘unusual’ (!!!) relationship with Maggie Gyllenhaal in the film ‘Secretary’(2002).