This is a photograph, not a painting. Called mogra in India, this type of jasmine is worn by South Indian women, tied around the hair bun. Riding on a bus in a Chennai (Madras) one is enveloped in the heady fragrance of these blooms worn by the female passengers. The garlands are tied deftly with some kind of long grass twine, and sold from baskets on street corners. Hopefully this trade will not die out as India modernises and loses many of its customs.
The Australian still life painter Margaret Olley passed away recently. She was a larger than life character in the Sydney art scene who was twice the subject of Archibald Portrait Prize winning entries by other artists. Though in her late 80s she was working towards an exhibition when she died in her sleep. A good way to go.
Her small terrace house in Paddington was full of objects she had collected over her life for composing her still life paintings.
“So I said to myself – I’ll paint what I see - what the flower is to me but I’ll paint it big and they will be surprised into taking the time to look at it - I will make even busy New Yorkers take time to see what I see of flowers.”
“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way - things I had no words for.”
“Nobody sees a flower - really - it is so small it takes time - we haven’t time - and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time.”
This Istanbul interior, by the American plein air painter Kenny Harris, is both simple and complex. It makes use of the quiet harmony of muted complementaries: a red-green scheme framing a yellow-blue scheme.
This is a collection of favorite still life paintings I've found over the years. I have a particular interest in the oil medium, but occasionally include works in other media, even the odd photo of a nice vase or flower. I hope it will provide a resource for still life painters and art lovers.
There are a few paintings of interiors, and some botanical paintings, which are not really classified as still life, but they fit better here than in my landscape or figurative painting blogs (see links).
Click on the images to see larger.
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