Colour Scheme is a rotating monthly online art exhibit featuring selected works by students of Bellerose, Paul Kane, and St. Albert Catholic high schools. Each month of the school year, several pieces will be highlighted on The Gazette's website on the last Saturday of the month.
Students explored the colour heliotrope for the month of April.
From the teachers:
Some colours loom larger in the popular imagination than in real life. Take heliotrope, a plant whose name was forged from two Greek components: helios (sun), and tropaios (to turn), because its purple flowers were supposed to turn and follow the sun as it moved across the sky.
The colour, in turn, takes its name from the plant's blooms. The colour's apogee came towards the end of the 19th century, the boom time for many shades of purple. Part of the colour's appeal was novelty.
Before William Perkin's mauve, purple had been difficult to produce, and still retained the imperial glamour of its ancient status, so perhaps the Victorians should be
forgiven for the increasingly lurid combinations of heliotrope that appeared in the next decade and beyond. In 1880 it was paired with light green or apricot; later it was partnered with canary yellow, eucalyptus green, art bronze, and peacock blue.
"No colours seem too bright," as one commentator put it. "The combinations of them are sometimes quite startling."