|European Paintings — Jan-Baptiste Bosschaert - Flowers in a Terracotta Vase on a Stone Ledge|
|Jan-Baptiste Bosschaert - Flowers in a Terracotta Vase on a Stone Ledge
Signed and dated lower left: JB Bosschaert f. 1709
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: Canvas size: 42 ¾ x 33 ¼ inches; Framed size: 49 x 39 inches
The second half of the seventeenth-century saw the development of a style of flower painting founded on sumptuous effects of form and color. Its aim was chiefly decorative and at first found favor in the cities of Paris and London. However, it was quickly adopted by the later proponents of the Antwerp School, most notably by Jean-Baptiste Bosschaert.
In this particularly fine example of the artist’s work, the garland of flowers opulently cascades and entwines itself around a classical urn. The urn is placed upon a plinth that juts out towards the viewer, giving the illusory effect of three-dimensionality. The muted tones and rigid architecture of the background forms only serves to heighten the vibrant hues of the tumbling blooms.
Despite the longevity of Jean-Baptiste Bosschaert, works by him are rare and little is known of his life. Although this work is signed, few other examples by the artist are. It seems that Bosschaert was unable to read and write until fairly late in life, perhaps accounting for the relative obscurity of his paintings. At the age of seventeen, his brothers apprenticed him to Jean Baptiste de Crepu. Bosschaert was illiterate, unable to sign his name to the contract of apprenticeship. Few other details of his life are known other than he became a member of the Guild of Saint Luke the year after the death of his teacher in 1689. Jean-Baptist is unrelated to the famous Bosschaert family dynasty of flower painters from the earlier part of the seventeenth century.
PROVENANCE: Anonymous sale
Christie’s, New York, 10 June 1983, lot 99