Since antiquity, painting has made use of flowers in order to convey a wide range of meanings through their scent, vivid colours, endless variety of shapes and forms, cultivation methods and therapeutic properties.

The present tour of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection offers a survey of Western art from the end of the Middle Ages to the present with the aim of analysing the numerous functions of floral symbols as indicators of heightened spirituality or extravagant display, conjugal fidelity or dynastic allegiance, and saintly innocence or exotic sensuality.