Elegant yet timeless, still life paintings span virtually every style of painting and are an integral part of many collections. While it was the Dutch painters of the 16th century that ushered in the Golden Age of the still life and elevated it to its own genre of painting, the form actually dates back to the ancient Egyptians who adorned burial tombs with depictions of crops, fish and meats. Still lifes were adapted in the Middle Ages to convey religious symbolism, while the Renaissance painters were enamored by elaborate depictions of flowers. The genre of still life painting has found favor well into the 20th century, with many of history’s most famous artists, including Monet, van Gogh and Picasso, offering their own unique interpretations and symbolism. For many historians and collectors, that is the true beauty of this artistic style - it allows the artist to fully express their creativity however they choose. With a wide variety of elements and subjects that can be featured in these paintings, all collectors can find a piece that best reflects their tastes and preferences.
What Are Still Life Paintings?
Still life paintings are characterized by the visual representation of inanimate objects as the main subjects of a piece. These works of art usually showcase items like fruit, vases, books, and other items common in everyday life, many imparted with symbolic meaning. Even from an early time, still life paintings have grabbed the attention of artists and historians alike.
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