Still Life with l’Esperance (1901; French Polynesia) by Paul Gauguin

Still Life with l'Esperance - Paul Gauguin - 1901; French Polynesia

Artwork Information

TitleStill Life with l'Esperance
ArtistPaul Gauguin
Date1901; French Polynesia
Dimensions65.5 x 77 cm
Art MovementPost-Impressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Still Life with l'Esperance

The artwork “Still Life with l’Esperance” is a painting created by artist Paul Gauguin in 1901 during his time in French Polynesia. Gauguin, known for his significant contributions to the Post-Impressionism movement, employed oil on canvas to produce this work. The dimensions of the artwork measure 65.5 by 77 centimeters, and it falls within the genre of still life. This piece is currently held in a private collection.

The artwork presents a vibrant arrangement of sunflowers dominating the canvas, with lush green leaves accompanying the bright petals. A sense of depth is achieved through the juxtaposition of blooms both at the forefront and in the background. The background features a muted brown hue, upon which emerges a sculptural figure in white, possibly reminiscent of classical statues—an element that adds a contrasting texture and form to the composition.

Below the bouquet, a bowl with reflective qualities rests on a surface, capturing the essence of its surroundings with color and fragmented light reflections. Additionally, a sunflower lies toppled over near the edge of the table, its stem extending off the canvas, suggesting continuation beyond the frame. Such a positioning adds a dynamic element to the otherwise static nature of still life.

Gauguin’s brushwork is expressive and loose, characteristic of the Post-Impressionistic style, and he renders his subjects with a rich palette and bold outlines. The artwork conveys a feeling of rustic simplicity while simultaneously alluding to deeper symbolic meanings—perhaps referencing life, vitality, and the cycle of nature.

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