Ideas

The Pomegranate Motif

Drawing of a Pomegranate Fruit

© Memorial Hall Museum, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association

Drawing of a Pomegranate Fruit

Ellen Miller, c. 1905.

Fertile Abundance

At first inspired by the pomegranate's frequent appearance in 18th-century needlework and later by its popularity as an Arts and Crafts motif, designers Ellen Miller and Margaret Whiting often incorporated this luscious fruit into Deerfield Society of Blue and White Needlework designs. Artists across the world and throughout time have chosen to represent the pomegranate, a fruit which holds symbolic importance for many of the world's cultures. A cross section of the pomegranate, whose fertile shape is formed from an abundance of fleshy seeds, was the model for this nature study by Ellen Miller. This particular view allows the artist to consider the effect that the fruit's several crowded seed chambers have on its overall shape and form. In art, the pomegranate is frequently represented with its seeds exposed.