Still life paintings: different forms
A still life painting is an artwork of an inanimate object. A still life often comprises certain objects or a combination of several objects with a particular symbolism or meaning. Consequently, you can interpret a still life painting differently. Consider for example a composition with crockery, bread and fruit, a hunting trophy, or a vase with a luxuriant bouquet of flowers. Musical instruments are also frequently depicted.
Various famous paintings with different still lifes have been made by old masters. They are unique to have, but often unaffordable. A newly created painting, made in the classical way, can have a comparable unique, authentic and particularly exclusive appearance.
The meaning of still lifes
In the 17th century, still life paintings often comprised objects with a symbolic meaning. For example, a skull stood for perishability (vanitas), special fruits and valuables referred to wealth and opulence. Unfortunately, we have lost a great deal of knowledge about the symbolic meaning of the authentic objects.
Today, still lifes are no longer composed of the old symbolism, but the painter depicts objects to which he can relate, or that have a special meaning for other people. An authentic painting of a still life often tells a story.
Painting: still life from old to modern
It seems that the old still lifes were more often made and displayed with a different intention from the more modern still lifes. With the old still lifes, certain objects stood for certain messages (symbolism), although of course artwork was also made with the intention of showing the beauty of the objects depicted. And, particularly with still lifes: it was common practise to commission a painter to depict the wealth and importance of the person commissioning the painting. Modern still lifes usually concern a personal meaning of an object for the person commissioning the painting, or the beauty of the painting, but of course, a unique and exclusive appearance will also play a part.
Would you like to know more about a still life artwork?
If you would like information about a still life painting for yourself, or to give as a present, then I will be pleased to discuss the possibilities and costs with you.
Also, read more information about a landscape painting or a portrait painting.