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Flowers in a Vase with Shells and Insects

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You are viewing image NG6593

Balthasar van der AST , 1593/94 - 1657

Flowers in a Vase with Shells and Insects


Date: about 1630
Medium: Oil on oak
Dimensions: 47 x 36.8 cm
Acquisition credit: Accepted by H.M. Government in lieu of Inheritance Tax and allocated to the National Gallery, 2003

Balthasar van der Ast has painted an arrangement of common flowers - irises, tulips, roses, carnations, antirrhinum and a fritillary - in a small earthenware vase. Insects - a butterfly, spider, bush cricket and wasp - crawl over them or hover around them. On the shelf on which the vase stands are three shells; in the early 17th century exotic shells were highly prized by Dutch collectors. The composition is carefully balanced in form and colour.

Balthasar van der Ast was the brother-in-law of Ambrosious Bosschaert the Elder, whose still life 'Flowers in a Vase' is in the National Gallery's Collection. He trained in Bosschaert's studio in Middelburg, continuing his master's style of precise descriptions of flowers and fruit.

Themes

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Keywords

Indoor, Still life, Vase, Shelf, Table, Vertical, Inside, Indoors, Interior, Interiors, Stillife, Insects, Colour, Flower, Flowers, Butterflies, Butterfly, Cricket, Crickets, Spider, Spiders, Shell, Shells, Colourful, Carnation, Iris, Rose, Petals, Plants, Insect, Bug, Bugs, Arachnid, Arachnids, Carnations, Roses, Colorful, Color, Colours, Colors, arrangement, irises, tulip, tulips, antirrhinum, fritillary, earthenware, earthen ware, bush cricket, wasp, wasps, crawl, crawling, hover, hovering

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