If you read about two things (or several) in a story, you wonder what they mean. Maybe their presence is symbolic. Especially if they recur time after time. Isn’t that what we’re taught in literature class? And if you see various images in a painting, maybe they are similarly meaningful. Certain kinds of art are famous for their symbolic content — like the Dutch 17th century still lifes, the vanitas pictures, or anybody’s, any era’s mythological or narrative paintings.
When as an artist you find yourself drawn to certain topics again and again, do the appearances suggest psychological insight and potential self-awareness? What prompts you to depict the things you do? What attracts, what repels?
And in the world of real things, does not the existence of the things have meaning? What do the things suggest about their author?
What does the book of Nature mean whenever we take the time to read it?