Post-Romanticism has been described as Romanticism after a broken heart. Jeremy Mann’s "A Long Abandoned Dream" is a paradigmatic work in the style. The oil painting’s figure is depicted with all the sensuality and beauty of a classic Romantic heroine, but she is suffused with sadness, even failure, her soaring Romantic ideals—true and lasting love, success, happiness—burned behind her.
The quixotic nature of Post-Romanticism is that sadness is its own kind of beauty, and Mann’s subject is perhaps even more sexually inviting now. The brilliant scent artist Bertrand Duchaufour has created in “Paestum Rose” a masterpiece in the style, a rose whose beauty is dark. The sunlight and the freshness of its first bloom are gone, and in the deepening shadows it has only grown more beautiful.