• Flowers in a Vase

    Artist:
    Heem, Jan Davidsz. de. 1606-1684
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    87,5x67,5 cm

Heem, Jan Davidsz. de. 1606-1684

Flowers in a Vase

Holland, between 1606 and 1684

Jan Davidsz de Heem is presumed to have been a pupil of Balthasar van der Ast, from whom he picked up his great skill in painting sumptuous bouquets. He combined great detail in his depictions down to the subtlest nuances with a brilliant choice of colours and exquisite taste in arranging his compositions. This artist painted plants with butterflies and other insects hovering above them, garlands of fruit, still lifes with household articles and fruit, and images of the Virgin Mary entwined with ivy and roses. De Heem masterfully exploited the possibilities of colour and achieved a high degree of translucence in his brushstrokes. His works are striking for their great realism. Still lifes of this sort with flowers were in high demand. This may be connected with Dutch people’s passion for growing both exotic and native flowers. Besides extolling the beauty of nature, an artist could invest such a still life with secret meaning. There was a whole widely known language of flowers that could convey, for example, a declaration of love or a polite rejection. In this huge bouquet researchers have identified more than 30 plant varieties, but the encoded message has not yet been deciphered.

Title:

Flowers in a Vase

Place:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

87,5x67,5 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1768; acquired from the K. Cobenzl collection in Brussels

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-1113

Category:

Collection:

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