Vase of flowers (1896; French Polynesia) by Paul Gauguin

Vase of flowers - Paul Gauguin - 1896; French Polynesia

Artwork Information

TitleVase of flowers
ArtistPaul Gauguin
Date1896; French Polynesia
Dimensions64 x 74 cm
Art MovementPost-Impressionism
Current LocationNational Gallery, London, UK

About Vase of flowers

Created by Paul Gauguin in 1896 during his time in French Polynesia, the artwork “Vase of Flowers” is an exquisite example of the Post-Impressionist movement. The oil on canvas measures 64 by 74 centimeters and is categorized as a still life. This painting can be found in the National Gallery located in London, United Kingdom.

The artwork showcases a vibrant display of flowers arranged in a dark vase. The composition is rich with color and texture, embodying the essence of Post-Impressionism with its emphasis on bold, expressive brushstrokes and a departure from the precise realism of earlier movements. Gauguin’s use of vivid, somewhat unnatural colors and the flatness of the plane give the bouquet a sense of depth and emotion that resonates with the viewer.

The backdrop of the work features a warm, yellowish tone that contrasts with the cool blues and purples of the flowers dominating the arrangement. This creates a dramatic effect that draws the eye immediately to the lush floral display. Dabs of whites, reds, and oranges punctuate the arrangement, suggesting a variety of flowers without the need for meticulous detail. The simplicity of the setup, with the focal subject against a nondescript background, allows the still life and its sumptuous palette to captivate one’s attention fully.

Scattered on the surface beneath the vase are individual petals, which add to the organic, almost untamed quality of the scene. Through this work, Gauguin captures both the fleeting beauty of nature and the exotic allure of the tropics, making “Vase of Flowers” a timeless piece within the Post-Impressionist canon.

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