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Ambrosius Bosschaert the Elder: 'Flowers in a Glass Vase'
On this small copper panel Bosschaert has painted with great delicacy and precision a bouquet of relatively common flowers - among them tulips, roses, wallflowers, daffodils and a carnation. He has described them with the precision of a botanical illustrator and yet carefully balanced the composition in terms of form and colour. In order both to enliven the painting and display his own virtuosity he has added a butterfly, a caterpillar and a fly. The bouquet is placed in a wine glass or 'roemer' (with its characteristic tear-shaped blobs of glass on the stem) which serves as a vase.

Bosschaert would have been able to study the flowers in the gardens of botanists and collectors in Middelburg.

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