Those almond blossoms are all very well, but there's something intrinsically wrong with nature, isn't there? The 18th-century French painter Francois Boucher certainly thought so, and he knew just what it was. 'Nature,' he declared boldly, 'is too green, and badly lit' ('trop verte et mal éclairée').
I came across this quotation today, and it reminded me rather of Ronald Firbank's equally lofty and absurd 'The world is so badly managed, one hardly knows to whom to complain.' One suspects, though, that Boucher probably meant it. He's not a painter I'm drawn to - his frothy Rococo confections don't appeal - but I'm prepared to forgive the man who could paint the outrageously erotic Mademoiselle O'Murphy (below).