Overview

Frans Snyders created a new form of still life in the early 17th century by combining fruit and game into a single image. Born in Antwerp, Snyders trained with Pieter Brueghel the Younger (c. 1564–1637/1638) and probably also with Hendrick van Balen (c. 1574/5–1632). In 1602, at the age of 23, he joined the Antwerp Guild of Saint Luke. He began to collaborate with Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640) in 1609, often painting the still-life and animal elements of Rubens' compositions. At the same time, he established his own workshop and achieved international fame for his imposing still lifes, which include large market scenes, hunting pieces, and tabletops set with fruit and dead game. His lavish and abundant still lifes—wittily arranged and executed with broad, firm brushstrokes and vivid colors—have a dynamic character unmatched by other artists.

This work is painted in Snyders' characteristic palette of bright and direct colors, with textures indicated by free and firm brushstrokes. The central focus of this remarkably well-preserved panel painting is an enormous wicker basket laden with red and green grapes, which is situated on a table covered by a red tablecloth. Surrounding the centrally placed basket of grapes are a tazza filled with figs, a Wan-li bowl, and a large number of small game birds.

Variants of this compositional type are found in other paintings from Snyders' workshop, including a studio work on canvas in the North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh. Pentimenti in the present work indicate that it is the original on which the Raleigh variant is based.

Inscription

null

Marks and Labels

null

Provenance

Oscar Winterbottom [b. 1891], Horton Hall, Northampshire; by descent in his family;[1] (sale, Christie, Manson & Woods, London, 8 July 2005, no. 50); (Johnny van Haeften Ltd., London, and Colnaghi, London); purchased 15 February 2006 by NGA.

Exhibition History

Bibliography

2006
Wheelock, Arthur K., Jr. "Frans Snyders, Still Life with Grapes and Game." Bulletin / National Gallery of Art, no. 35 (Fall 2006): 20-21, repro.

Conservation Notes

null

Related Works

Related Resources

  • Event Type
    Event Name
    March 1–June 1
    Mon, Tues, and Wed at 1:00
    March 5, 2012 at 2:00
    March 7, 2012 at 4:00
    East Building, Auditorium
    Name of docent
    image:
    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum
    60 minutes
    Registration for this event begins on April 1, 2012 at noon.
    Download the program notes (100k)
  • Self-Guided Tour
    Italian Collection
    image:
    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum