Book Review: “Flower Flash” by Lewis Miller

This lovely tome opens with the Walt Whitman quote, “Happiness…not in another place but this place, not for another hour but this hour.” Lewis Miller has personified the celebration of the moment in his surprise flower installations throughout New York City. What began as a way to share his craft (grand floral designs featured at elegant social gatherings), extend the life of the creations, and share with the masses, Miller has honed the “Flower Flash.” Miller’s Flashes are random, gigantic displays built with recycled blooms and installed before dawn in very public locations. His mission: “To create a positive, emotional response through flowers.” And, has he ever been successful! Miller’s Flashes have been a welcome sight to pandemic-weary medical workers, tourists, and hardened New Yorkers in equal measure.

Flower Flash is an homage to these gorgeous pieces from their advent in 2016, to Covid-dominated 2021. What can one say about a book overflowing with images of such beauty? As for me, I welcome the absolute extravagance, the splendid joy in seeing masses of delightful, colorful blooms popping up from trash cans, draped over iconic statuary, and spilling out of the open doors of an ice cream truck. This book is the perfect escape. The photographs are stunning. Lewis Miller’s Flower Flash is the balm we need right now. As the 19th Century poet Minnie Aumonier so elegantly wrote, “When the world wearies, and society ceases to satisfy, there is always the garden.”

This book is available for check-out from your friendly RHS Library.