Basket of Flowers


Osias Beert the Elder ( Flemish, 1575 - 1624 )

c. 1615
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General Description

Netherlandish 16th-century paintings often included illusionistic details of flowers, food, or musical instruments. By the end of the century, these details were themselves the subjects of paintings. Osias Beert's scene represents this new art of still-life. But the apparent realism of the crisply rendered pinks, peonies, tulips, and irises is somewhat deceptive. Beert did not paint directly from the natural model. Instead, he created his composition from a number of individual studies of flowers he had made over time.

Excerpt from

DMA label copy, 1993.

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