Lilacs in a Vase (c. 1882) by Edouard Manet

Lilacs in a Vase - Edouard Manet - c.1882

Artwork Information

TitleLilacs in a Vase
ArtistEdouard Manet
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions21 1/16 x 16 3/8 in. (54 x 42 cm)
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationAlte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany
Location Created Paris, France

About Lilacs in a Vase

“Lilacs in a Vase” is an artwork by Edouard Manet, created circa 1882. It is a still life painted in oil on canvas, featuring the impressionistic technique indicative of the era. The artwork measures 21 1/16 x 16 3/8 inches (54 x 42 cm) and is currently housed in the Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany. The piece was painted in Paris, France, and exemplifies Manet’s contribution to the Impressionist movement.

The artwork captures the simple beauty of lilacs arranged in a glass vase. The bouquet of lilacs, with their rich white and subtle purplish hues, dominate the canvas, exuding a sense of lush fullness and natural elegance. The blooms contrast vividly against the dark, almost indistinct background, highlighting the play of light and shadow characteristic of Impressionist works. Hints of green leaves intermixed with the flowers provide a complementary color balance, enhancing the organic composition of the piece.

Manet’s brushwork is loose and expressive, with less emphasis on fine detail and more on the overall effect of color and light. The glass vase is rendered with strokes that give it a translucent quality, reflecting and refracting the stems within, and creating an intimate dance between the natural elements and their vessel. The vivid depiction of the flowers and their casual arrangement in the vase lend the painting an immediacy, as if the viewer is glimpsing a fleeting moment in time, captured by the artist’s perceptive eye.

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