The setting for this painting is a valley surrounded on both sides with mountain peaks that recede off into the distance. It is a place that Victor saw in a vision. The same location also provides the setting for his painting "By the River of Chebar". The insects depicted are all ones that usually stay on the ground or close to the ground, crawling, taking short hops, or brief flights. Here Victor shows them provided with hot air balloons to transport them aloft, so that they have a way to experience soaring into the sky like butterflies or even birds.
On the left side of the painting, a stair made of books shows knowledge leading upward and onward. The stag beetle in the foreground is not yet even on the first step of this upward pathway, but the beetle is curious, and makes an initial motion toward ascending the first step.
The insects can be regarded as "young souls", through grace given the chance to soar to heaven.
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